Chronicles of Joi: Chapter 1

The Princess and the Thief

The day was coming to an end over the Famous Konowan Buyer’s Market. During the two days out of the week when it is open, the place is a bustling metropolitan of commerce. 

While the area is a fine place to find products that you would need, because it is an unregulated area, allowing anyone to sell with or without a business license, the types of goods may not be completely obtained legally. One would just need to purchase a plot, and whatever they use it for is between them and the customer.

The city of Konowa, in the Country of Joi, had lost a great deal of its population after the end of the ‘Age of Immortality’, during a botched ritual to Summon their supposed Guardian Deity. The City soon was taken over by Violently Wealthy Businessmen who profited off the decimated populations’ remaining loot. 

The Province of Kow, where Konowa is situated, was later split in half following the Outsider Invasion. The Outsiders subjugated the Eastern Population resulting in all relics and items of Power being destroyed. The Western Population continued to fight, losing their numbers until intervention from the Demigods eliminated the outsiders. Now the City is in a constant state of Fighting between wealthy businessmen, leaving the poor to act as Soldiers for hire, or thieves.

Reqshal, a young man with the appearance of someone in their early 20s, relaxed on his platform converting the money he scammed from customers into usable currency. A group of 3 guys kicked the base of his platform trying to get his attention.

Reqshal didn’t look over at them. He was too busy counting. “Sorry, I’m closed for today, pal. Try and catch me next week if you want to buy some herbs.” Reqshal said to the three.

Sarrel, a much stronger looking man, reached into the bag he was holding and dumped the contents onto Reqshal’s stomach. Reqshal looked at the plants, which had come from the bag, realizing that these guys were customers who had already tested his product and were coming back to give their review. Sarrel grabbed Reqshal by the shirt and lifted him up.

“You think this is a game huh? Were you trying to kill my Nana by selling me Bull Shit!?” Sarrel angrily asked Reqshal.

Reqshal began to laugh nervously. “No way! Why would I do that!? I don’t even know your Nana. you see, what you threw on me was my Umaganess Herbs, what you were looking for was my Yutoi Herb, right? That’ll be like 190 Dollas.” Reqshal responded to Sarrel, testing to see if he could earn a little more from these guys.

Sarrel pressed Reqshal against the wall.

“I ain’t looking to buy crap from you!” Sarrel said to the pinned Reqshal. Saarrel gestured for the two other guys. “Take all of his shit.” Sarrel commanded them.

The two other guys started emptying out Reqshal’s belonging. All they were finding was just garbage and worthless items.

“Oh come on guys, you don’t need to do that. This was all a big misunderstanding.” Reqshal said, while still being pressed up against the wall. He obviously was not taking any of what was happening seriously.

“Nothing of his has any value! All he has is a bunch of crap!” Dou, one of the guys who came with Sarrel said.

“Hey! All my stuff is premium grade. You would know if you were medically trained like I am.” Reqshal responded.

Dou started checking Reqshal’s pockets.

Reqshal immediately kicked one of the poles holding his plot up causing it to begin to collapse. Reqshal attached a trigger to the pole where it would release a bolt of electricity along the ground, shocking anyone standing in his plot.

Sarrel, Dou and the other guy fell down unconscious as Reqshal released himself from Sarrel’s grip.He then went through the pockets of the 3 guys. He emptied them out completely and walked away from the scene as if nothing happened.

After some distance had been traveled Reqshal started checking what he stole.

“Wow, those guys were loaded. I should have followed them to their home when I had the chance.” Reqshal thought to himself.

There was one item within the loot that stood out among the others. 

“On Earth is this thing?” Reqshal said quietly while holding a glowing shard. He tossed it into the air and caught it, imagining the amount it would sell for. He whistled as he exited the Buyer’’s Market.

Near the exit, the serpent beast he called for came down to pick him up.

“Destination?” The driver of the serpent asked Reqshal.

Reqshal selected his destination on the map that was offered to him by the Driver. He selected to go to the middle of the forest.

“30 Dollas.” The Driver said to Reqshal.

Reqshal scans the Beast’s Code and 30 Dollas was transferred. Reqshal hopped on the serpent and it took off into the air towards his destination.

Later, in the Aku Daral Manor with Sarrel, Dou and their partner.

A woman dressed in white sat on a high throne in front of Sarrel and his partners. She had a man next to her tied from head to toe in whip-like ropes. The 3 men were bowing their heads and apologizing, begging for forgiveness.

“So you’re telling me, that not only did you not get the correct medicine for my dear Ol Gran Gran, but you also lost the Shard of Serenity?” Court Queen Oblivia asked Sarrel as she chewed on a crystal.

“We are sorry, it was a thin guy at the stalls today. We thought he would do quick work, but he hit-” Sarrel began to explain what happened with Reqshal before Oblivia interrupted him.

“Shut up!” She yelled as she stopped chewing.

Sarrel went silent immediately.

The Court Queen stood up. She gestured her hand.

The guy covered in whips released one of the ropes and sliced one of the 3 men in half. They then bled out on the floor. Immediately dying.

The bound man then stood back to where he was.

“Do you understand how many strings I had to pull to get that shard? Do you know how much POWER you just lost me!?” Court Queen Oblivia asked Sarrel, feeling a bit annoyed.

The room went completely silent. Sarrel was nervous.

“Answer me when I am talking to you, you idiot!” The Court Queen commanded Sarrel more loudly and aggressively.

“I don’t know! Please! I don’t want to die! We will get everything back, I swear!” Sarrel began to plead for his life.

The Court Queen then went back to her seat. She returned to being calm and menacing.

“Oh yeah? Don’t worry. If you don’t get it back, then death would be the least of your problems.” The Court Queen responded.

She snapped her fingers and two men walked out of the room off to the side. Both of them were wearing official medical suits.

“Doctor Rimu and Doctor Stel, adjust these two.” The Court Queen commanded as the two medical men grabbed Dou and Sarrel. They were then brought into the back room.

Court Queen Oblivia then began to chew on her shard again. She stood up and walked towards the back room. She felt disgusted at the bloody mess on his floor. 

“Won’t you be a dear and clean up that mess for me.” The Court Queen said to the Bound Man.

The Bound man crawls towards the bloody mess. He used the whips to support his movement like a spider. He then began to consume the remains of the guy that was split earlier. The Court Queen continued her way to the back room, shutting the door behind her.

Reqshal had made it to his shack in the Konowa forest.

His home was nothing more than a beaten up shack which was in total disrepair. He has photos of a young kid, most likely himself. Many of the images showed him and his mom, he looked to be a teenager in those. And the images that had all three of them looked like he was a small child.

Reqshal had his bag of items all around the floor. He laid down completely lazily. As he rested he heard snapping twigs outside. Reqshal jumped to attention and went for a peak outside. He didn’t see anyone approaching his home.

“An animal I guess?” Reqshal thought to himself as he looked out his window.

He then hears his door open. But he didn’t see anyone coming in.

He pulls a knife out of his back pocket. He walks slowly around his home looking to see if someone came in.

Reqshal searches in the bathroom and grabs his gun that he had under the toilet seat. And places his knife back into his back pocket.

“Hey! Whoever you are. You can leave right now, and I won’t have to shoot you.” Reqshal said while searching for the intruder.

Reqshal taps his gun on the wall.

“You hear that? That’s a grade A weapon in my hand, and if you’re not trying to end up with a giant hole in your chest, you should leave me alone.” Reqshal called out.

Reqshal heard stumbling in his main bedroom. “Ah crap! How’d you get by me?” Reqshal thought to himself running towards his room.

He ran into the room and saw that his disorganized stuff was more disorganized than usual. Reqshal looked around and still didn’t see anyone.

He felt his body being touched. He punched whatever was touching him and backed away, and immediately shot in its direction.

“Ghost!” Reqshal yelled out.

The shots missed their mark but he saw a young lady laying on the ground. She looked to be royally dressed. He slowly walked towards her with his gun still ready to be fired. He taps the body with his foot, trying to keep some distance.

“Hey, Ghost Girl…” Reqshal said, tapping her again with his foot.

After a few more taps she gets up quickly and begins to attack Reqshal.

Reqshal tries to dodge her but she was much better at fighting than he was. She had complete control of the fight and was knocking him around his own house.

“Hey! Hold up! What are you doing?” Reqshal asked, trying to get her to stop.

He was tossed against the wall again. And the girl began to punch his face repeatedly. He then claps his hand and arrows are shot out from his walls. The arrows impacted the other side of the room missing both himself and the girl. He tossed his gun and knife at the girl.

She catches both of them, and points the gun at Reqshal.

Reqshal then claps his hands again and the lines that were attached to the arrows sent bolts of electricity out to everything in the room that was metal, including the gun in the girl’s hand. She was shocked and fell unconscious.

Reqshal finally calmed down and caught his breath. He pulled one of the lines down and tied her up.

The next morning.

The girl wakes up tied to a chair as she sees that she is completely bound. She saw Reqshal making himself some breakfast.

Reqshal notices her and walks over with what looked like a piece of toast in his mouth.

“I was getting worried that I might have killed you with electricity last night. Glad to see you’re awake.” Reqshal said, talking with his mouth full.

Amora, the girl that was tied to the chair, tested out how tight the bonds were on her.

“No use trying to get out, I tied you up pretty good.” Reqshal said to her.

Reqshal was happy with his handy work and continued to eat in peace. Amora then taps on her leg with her other foot and burns the ropes off of her body. She got up and immediately started heading towards Reqshal. Reqshal began to panic and backed up into his kitchen.

“Hey! Hey! I didn’t do anything!” Reqshal called out with his hands up.

Amora reached for her bag and saw that she no longer had it. She was surprised.

“Your thievery knows no bounds does it? Where is my handbag?” Amora asked, glaring at Reqshal.

“Hey! You came into my house last night and tried to steal my stuff. I think you are the thief in this scenario.” Reqshal responded.

“You stole my Shard of Serenity yesterday! How dare you accuse me of such a lowly crime!” Amora said, accusing Reqshal.

Amora began to search through his stuff.

“Ah… you know I am still here. You can’t just start looking through my stuff like that.” Reqshal said, wondering why Amora seemed uninterested in him.

“I have determined that you are not a threat to me. And you’re obviously too dumb to know what I’m talking about. So I am going to look for it myself.” Amora responded, still looking through his stuff.

Reqshal then turned around towards his kitchen.

“Well fine. Do you want some toast while you look?” Reqshal asked.

She didn’t respond to him. He then made some more toast and tried to hand it to her.

“I might have taken it. I don’t know. I take a lot of things. Describe it to me.” Reqshal said to Amora.

Amora takes the toast and then tosses it on the ground. “Tell me where my bag is, and I’ll find it myself.” Amora responded, she then walked to the other side of the room.

Reqshal looked at the toast that was now on the ground. He picked it up and brushed off the dust and ate it himself. As he began to eat again they both heard a loud thud outside.

Reqshal ran to his window and looked out. He saw Sarrel outside. Sarrel had grown considerably in size, and looked slightly demented. Sarrel pulled out a machine that trached the Energy Signal of the Shard of Serenity.

Sarrel then broke into the house through the wall, knocking dust and wall pieces at Reqshal and Amora.

“Come on dude! You didn’t need to do all of that!” Reqshal said to Sarrel.

Sarrel grabbed Reqshal’s face extremely quickly, he held him like a ragdoll.

Amora ignored what was going on and continued her search for her bag.

“I know you still have it! Give me back everything you stole from me! And I’ll make your death painless.” Sarrel commanded Reqshal.

“I don’t know what you are even talking about…” Reqshal said, struggling to get out of Sarrel’s grip.

“Wow, you stole from him too. Your thievery truly doesn’t know any bounds.” Amora said.

Sarrel then started shaking Raqshal’s body and the things on his person began to fall out.

Amora’s bag, the Shard of Serenity, a baby photo of him with his parents, among other things.

Sarrel saw the Shard of Serenity and went to reach for it.

“There we are.” Sarrel said, still holding Reqshal’s face to the wall. Amora rushed to the Shard and blocked Sarrel’s hand. She grabbed the Shard herself.

“What do you think you are doing? This is mine!” Amora said, scolding Sarrel.

Sarrel threw Reqshal to the side and turned his attention to Amora.

“Give it to me, or you will get hurt!” Sarrel said to Amora.

“Were you the one that initially stole it from me then?” Amora questioned Sarrel.

“Give it to me!” Sarrel responded, reaching for the Shard. Amora kicked his hand away, then kicked the back of his head, sending Sarrel stumbling into Reqshal’s bed.

Amora then tried to run out of the house through the hole that Sarrel made. Reqshal grabbed her leg, preventing her from leaving.

“You aren’t going to leave, look at what you did to my house!” Reqshal said to Amora, as he held her leg tightly.

Sarrel got up quickly and ran towards Amora.

Amora kicked Reqshal in the face, knocking him out, but Reqshal handcuffed his hand to her leg.

Amora fell forward trying to run. She then looked at the binds. “Really?!” She thought to herself, seeing that now she was handcuffed to an unconscious man.

She grabbed Reqshal and threw him on her shoulder. She then jumped out of the hole to attempt an escape from Sarrel.

Sarrel chased the pair, Amora’s speed was hindered greatly by the weight of Reqshal on her back.

Reqshal woke up, just in time to see his house completely collapse in the distance.

“Aww damn! Really! That’s going to take like a month to build back up again!” Reqshal complained, as he was still being carried on Amora’s back.

“Why did you bound yourself to me? Where’d you even get those cuffs from?” Amora asked. Reqshal still rode on Amora’s back.

“Whatever that thing you both are trying to get seems pretty valuable, so you know, I figured that maybe you could throw me a little bit of cash.” Reqshal responded to Amora.

“Why would I give a thief money?!” Amora was shocked that Reqshal even thought that was an option.

“To free yourself from me, obviously.” Reqshal responded as if it was obvious.

Sarrel began to gain on them as she began to tire out.

“Release the bonds so that I can take care of this guy!” Amora commanded Reqshal.

“Will you pay me?” Reqshal asked.

“No!” Amora quickly responded.

Sarrel caught up to the pair. “I got you now!” Sarrel said, reaching to grab Amora.

“Yes! Hurry up!” Amora shouted at Reqshal.

“Release” Reqshal said, clapping his hands together. The cuffs released. Amora and Reqshal split apart causing Sarrel to go completely through the space between them. He stumbled on the ground. Amora and Reqshal laid on the ground. Amora was completely exhausted.

“Dang, I won’t even get to spend it if I’m not alive.” Reqshal said to himself.

Amora then turned invisible.

“Dammit! Really?! I thought we had a deal!” Reqshal shouted.

Sarrel looked around trying to see Amora, but he was unable to. Sarrel then grabbed Reqshal by the throat.

“You must be her friend right? So she’s going to have to come back to save you.” Sarrel said to Reqshal.

Reqshal tried to breathe as he was being choked. “I think you are overestimating our relationship.” Reqshal responded.

Sarrel choked Reqshal even harder.

Reqshal began to pass out. “Damn, I’m going out like a nerd.” Reqshal thought to himself.

Two rods were then shoved into Sarrel’s neck, and a bolt of electricity flowed between them. The shock made Sarrel’s hand spasm causing Reqshal to be released. Sarrel then collapsed and fell to the ground face first.

Reqshal crawled away from Sarrel, and he looked around to what saved him.

Amora revealed herself.

“Ah, so you didn’t ditch me.” Reqshal said, genuinely feeling surprised.

“I made an agreement with you. Why would I leave without fulfilling it?” Amora responded.

Reqshal rubbed his neck. “I mean… it’s not like I do that or anything.” Reqshal said nervously.

Amora grabbed Reqshal’s hand to pull him along. She started running.

“Come on! He is not going to stay down for long.” Amora commanded Reqshal.

The pair ran until they could spot a Manor in the distance.

Reqshal walked behind Amora quite a ways behind her. He was not able to keep up with her speed.

“Why are you taking me so far? You can just hand me like 10 Thousand Dollas and I’ll be out of your hair. You got what you want right?” Reqshal asked Amora.

Amora continued to walk ignoring what he asked her. Reqshal continued to wait for a response that never came.

“You know, it would be a lot cooler if we had an actual conversation. Or if you’re not into that, then a quick transfer would do.” Reqshal said to Amora as she continued to walk in silence.

“Come on, someone like you got to have at least that much. Honestly, I think I’m low balling it.” Reqshal continued to speak.

“Is all you think about is money?” Amora responded.

“Money is what makes the world go round. I didn’t make the rules, I just live by it.” Reqshal answered.

“I don’t keep money on me. So we are going to have to go to my estate to get it.” Amora said to Reqshal.

“You don’t keep money on you, but you keep things of even more value?” Reqshal asked.

“There’s a difference between these items and money. This stuff is actually useful.” Amora quickly responded.

“Money is pretty useful too. I bet a girl like you would be able to get a lot easily in one night.” Reqshal said, looking up and down Amora.

Amora turned around furious at Reqshal’s comment.

“Are you undressing me with your eyes?!” Amora yelled at him.

“I’m not hurting anyone, besides, it’s idiotic to go out into town with no money. Especially a girl like you.” Reqshal responded to her.

Amora began to quickly speak as she gestured her hand up, and on her chest a bright light appeared. Then she gestured her hand down and Reqshal began to sink into the ground.

Reqshal began to panic.

“Okay! I give! I’ll stop being a turd to you princess or whatever you are!” Reqshal pleaded.

Reqshal then stopped sinking and climbed out of the ground. Amora seemed a bit tired after that, but she still stood proud and strong.

“Pretty sure I can handle myself a lot better out there than you could. I don’t need your street advice.” Amora said to Reqshal.

They both continued to walk in silence until the manor was directly in front of them. They stood in front of the gate.

“So, how’d you do that?” Reqshal asked Amora.

Amora touches the shield around the gate, and scans her biometrics.

“Someone of your disposition won’t be able to do it. You are far too corrupt to be able to perform any of these techniques.” Amora responded to Reqshal.

The shield then opened up. Amora and Reqshal walked into the courtyard. The Manor is one of the few places that have truly kept up with the former aesthetic of the city of Konowa. It’s plants were  a luscious green colour, and had flowing water around the court. The building looked to have over a hundred rooms and was white with a red roof.

“Well damn, look at this place. I bet this cost a fortune.” Reqshal said, looking at the premise.

“You stand in the courtyard. I’ll be back.” Amora commanded Reqshal.

Amora walked into the building leaving Reqshal outside. Reqshal walked around the outside. He saw a gardener tending to the shrubs.

“Hey my guy, what’s happening? Doing some plant cutting I see.” Reqshal attempted to open a conversation.

“Yes, quite.” The gardener responded.

The gardener continued to cut the shrubs. Reqshal watched him and stared at his outfit.

“So, I’m guessing you’re some kind of servant or something right? You got captured huh?” Reqshal asked the gardener.

“No, this is a job.” The gardener responded. The gardener then looked down at Reqshal. “I’m guessing that is something you don’t know much about.”

“A job? Man, you have no clue how many jobs I have. A job isn’t anything. The amount of money I make is insane.” Reqshal responded gloating, but giving off the impression that he has no idea what a job is.

The gardener ignored Reqshal.

“So… let me hypothetically ask. If I were to get a job here, how much would I be making?” Reqshal asked the gardener.

“That entirely depends on what you are good at. It could be anywhere between 30 thousand to 800 thousand  a day.” The gardener responded.

Reqshal felt a bit uneasy in the legs. He began to stumble. “800 Thousand! A day?!” Reqshal could not believe that number.

Reqshal sat down to keep from collapsing.

“You don’t need to worry about that. I doubt you have any abilities that are worth that much.” The gardener said to Reqshal.

“Why you gotta be so rude, man! All you do is cut plants. I bet I could do that too!” Reqshal said, trying to grab the cutting tool. The gardener flipped Reqshal and pinned him to the ground.

“Like I said, you don’t have any ability worth that much.” The gardener reiterated to Reqshal.

Amora and her Father walked outside and saw that Reqshal was pinned to the ground.

Dionysal, the Father of Amora, walked over to the two men.

“You may get up from him, Fengsal.” Dionysal said to the gardener.

Fengsal got up immediately and continued his gardening work. Dionysal looked at Reqshal closely.

“So you are the scoundrel that’s attempting to extort my daughter, right?” Dionysal asked Reqshal.

“Don’t say it like that. It was more of a deal than extortion, Promise.” Reqshal responded.

“He quite literally bound me to him, and wouldn’t release the constraints until I agreed to pay him.” Amora said to her father.

They both looked down at Reqshal.

“Do you deny that?” Dionysal asked.

“I mean, yeah you can describe it like that. But did she tell you that she broke into my house last night. Practically broke everything.” Reqshal responded.

Dionysal then looked at Amora.

“That’s true, only because you stole my Shard!” Amora quickly said back to Reqshal.

“I didn’t steal anything from you except your bag, and that was more for my own protection. Since it was obvious that you were going to use them to hit me.” Reqshal got up and pointed at Amora.

“You liar! How’d you get my Shard then?!” Amora asked Reqshal.

“I stole it from the guy that was chasing us.” Reqshal responded.

“Did you know what you were stealing?” Amora suspiciously asked Reqshal.

“I ain’t got a clue, Princess.” Reqshal responded.

Amora took a deep breath in and exhaled it with great frustration.

“FIne then. Father, I’m going to transfer 10 Thousand Dollas into this man’s account.” Amora said to Dionysal.

“Go ahead.” He responded.

“Well before you do that, can I suggest another proposition my good sirs and madam. How about I just work here for like a day or two, for at about 800 Thousand Dollas a day rate.” Reqshal attempted to take an opportunity to make more money.

“No way! You are one step away from being literal trash! Just take the money and go!” Amora yelled at Reqshal.

Amora reached out her hand for Reqshal to hand her his transaction code. He pulls it out of his sleeves practically unwillingly. Amora takes it and begins to scan. Suddenly, there was a loud thunderous bang at the Shield in front of the Manor.

Someone was yelling from outside.

“Give me that damn Shard! I’ll bust down this shield and kill every last one of you in there!” Sarrel yelled out.

Sarrel seemed to have grown considerably since their last encounter.

Dionysal signaled for some of the workers to go to the gate and take care of Sarrel.

A Dozen workers ran out and stood at the gate ready to fight Sarrel. Sarrel stopped pounding on the gate.

“You think this will stop us from getting your Shard? This is nothing to Queen Oblivia.” Sarrel taunted Dionysal.

The face of the workers at the gate twitched. Dionysal’s face went from being mildly entertained into a serious expression.

“Oh yeah. You’re all scared now. If you don’t give it to me right now, we all are going to come back over here and slaughter every last one of you.” Sarrel threatened everyone in the Manor.

.”What do we do?” Amora asked Dionysal.

“What is her offer?!” Dionysal yelled back at Sarrel.

“Father, you can’t be serious. This was a gift from the Demigods.” Amora said to Dionysal.

“Her offer is not killing you all.” Sarrel responded back to Dionysal.

“Doesn’t sound good enough for me. We are just going to get rid of you.” Dionysal said to Sarrel.

“Come on then, Old Man! Let’s see what you got!” Sarrel taunted.

Dionysal gestured for the workers to open the Shield, so that they could storm and capture Sarrel. The Shield opened up, and Sarrel immediately put out a Shard and shot it directly at Dionysal from where he was standing. Sarrel did not care about being taken out by the workers.

The shot traveled toward Amora because Sarrel was a bit off.

Reqshal jumped in front of the projectile but it just passed through both him and Amora anyways. They both then collapsed on the ground.

Sarrel was immediately taken down, and was captured.

Dionysal went down to check on his daughter.

“Honey, are you okay?” Dionysal asked.

She was unconscious and Reqshal was no longer there.

The workers cuffed Sarrel and brought him into the dungeon.

After the situation cooled, Amora who was laid to rest for a bit on her bed awoke. She looked at where she felt she was hit and didn’t feel any pain or notice a wound.

“What happened? It’s so late in the day.” Amora thought to herself as she looked out the window.

“Yeah really, it’s like we were out for hours.” Reqshal responded.

Amora quickly looked around her room to see where Reqshal was. But she didn’t see him anywhere.

“Wait… Where are you? Are you invisible?” Amora asked.

“What are you saying, you’re the one that’s invisible.” Reqshal responded.

Amora looked down at her body, and saw that she was indeed present.

“I’m not invisible.” Amora said aloud.

“That wasn’t my body…” Reqshal responded.

They both then realized what happened. Amora ran to the mirror.

“Oh no! You’re in my head!” Amora said, realizing that she couldn’t see Reqshal, not because he was invisible, but because he is part of her thoughts.

“Wait, so I don’t have a body anymore!?” Reqshal responded.

Amora then slowly started to become Reqshal as his thoughts were becoming the prominent speaker.

“No! No stop! I don’t want to be trapped in your head!” Amora said as their body slowly became Reqshal’s.

Reqshal patted himself. “That’s a bit better.” Reqshal said to himself.

Amora then responded back by trying to take control of the body. Their physical appearance began to look like her again. Then once again Reqshal fought and made the body once again look like him.

They both then heard a knock at the door.

“Is everything okay, Lady Amora?” The Housekeeper asked.

Amora then took full control of the body and they became her.

“Yes, I am perfectly well here. Thank you for caring for me Tioral.” Amora responded.

“Well, your mid afternoon meal is ready for you downstairs whenever you are ready. Or I could bring it up to you.” The Housekeeper said to Amora.

“Let him bring it up here, I never got served before.” Reqshal thought aloud.

“Shut up!” Amora responded, but the words came out of her mouth rather than in her head.

“Beg your pardon?” The Housekeeper responded.

“Right up! Bring it right up, please, Tioral.” Amora said to the Housekeeper.

“Very well, Lady Amora.” The Housekeeper said as they left from the front of the door.

“You don’t think about anything until we get this figured out!” Amora scolded Reqshal.

“So what are you going to do when you take a shower huh?” Reqshal asked Amora.

“I can’t believe I share a body with you now! This is the worst! I figured that paying you would get you out of my hair as soon as possible, but now look.” Amora said to Reqshal.

“Probably wouldn’t be in this mess if you just paid me more quickly rather than trying to accuse me of a crime… just saying.” Reqshal responded.

Amora then started walking to her door. She began to sneak down her hallway trying to make her way to the dungeon.

“Why are you sneaking? Isn’t this your house?” Reqshal asked.

“Just in case you start thinking of something stupid. I wouldn’t want us transforming out in the open and you being in a place you aren’t supposed to be.” Amora responded to Reqshal.

“Ah, so it would suck if I started thinking about the type of food that will be waiting for us in your room.” Reqshal said, out of spite for Amora calling his thoughts stupid.

Amora then began to transform into Reqshal. Amora saw someone approaching and hid behind the corner. The person approached Amora. She was back in her own form.

“Lady Amora, happy to see you are up. What are you doing, hiding?” The Librarian asked Amora.

“Me? Hiding? No, I am just checking the craftsmanship of these walls. Komali does a good job keeping these maintained, right?” Amora said to the Librarian.

“Sure. Is there anything you need from me before I go, Lady Amora?” The Librarian asked.

“No, I’m okay. Please, continue with what you were doing.” Amora responded.

The Librarian left, and Amora continued onward to the dungeon.

Amora made her way there and found Sarrel sitting around playing with his toes in complete boredom. She stood in front of the cell and stared down at him. He looked up at her.

“What are you looking at?” Sarrel asked Amora.

“What did you shoot my father with earlier?” Amora asked.

“I don’t know. Some kind of curse. It obviously didn’t work.” Sarrel responded by showing Amora the bonds he had on him.

“What was the curse supposed to do?” Amora asked another question.

“Make’s someone’s worst nightmare their ongoing reality.” Sarrel responded, trying to ignore Amora.

Amora then transformed into Reqshal.

“Oh that’s messed up! You barely knew me for a day and becoming me was your worst nightmare?” Reqshal said aloud.

Sarrel then saw the two transform. He began to laugh.

“Wait! I got both of you!? Oh that is funny! Serves you both right!” Sarrel pointed at Reqshal. “If you just gave me that damn Shard when I came by that dirty old shack, then this wouldn’t have happened.” Sarrel scolded Reqshal.

“So how do you reverse this thing?” Reqshal asked, stepping up closer to the cell.

“The F*ck am I supposed to know. I’m done talking to you both. Queen Oblivia will be coming to get me out soon. So you don’t need to worry about living long enough to suffer.” Sarrel responded as he turned over to his side.

Reqshal slowly became Amora.

“Well that’s not good news… I need to go and tell my father!” Amora said as she ran out of the Prisoner Holding area.

“No wait! We should look it up first before having them attempt anything. I super don’t want to die. And if they just try to exorcize me, or something like that, who knows, it might just kill me.” Reqshal said to Amora.

“Fine, just don’t think about anything as we make our way to the library.” Amora commanded Reqshal.

Amora made her way through the Manor. The workers were patrolling the area and were on high alert. Amora walked past them to the library. She then began to look through the books. But wasn’t quite finding what she was looking for.

“Maybe it’s in the Medicine Section?” Reqshal suggested.

“Why would it be in Medicine, it’s obviously a technique.” Amora responded.

“I don’t know, it’s a suggestion. My mom worked in medicine and-” Reqshal began to say before the Librarian interrupted their thoughts.

“Glad to see you came by and visited the Library, Lady Amora. Is there a book you are looking for?” The Librarian asked Amora.

“Yes, I’m looking for one on curses. Where would I find those?” Amora asked.

“You have to be a bit more specific than that. There are Temporal Curses, Ambition Curses, Personal Curses, Light Curses, Dark Curses. It could go on forever really.” The Librarian responded.

“Where would a body changing curse be located? You know, like one that makes someone fat, or changes them into a completely different person.” Amora asked the Librarian.

“That’s quite specific. Are you planning on learning how to do that curse? I can teach you if you want. Those books should be located in the Scripts from the Age of Witches.” The Librarian responded to Amora.

Amora followed the Librarian through the book columns.

“Not yet. I’m just curious for now.” Amora said to the Librarian.

The Librarian showed Amora the shelf. “Well here you are, Lady Amora. If you need anything just come to my desk.” The Librarian said before leaving.

Amora then skimmed through the pages.

“Oh look, there goes the body changing curse.” Reqshal noticed as Amora quickly ran her hand through the list.

“When one has their body altered to the appearance of another the change is permanent until the caster removes the curse.” The Page read.

“I don’t think this is correct.” Amora said, reading on.

“Why not, it’s exactly like what’s happening.” Reqshal responded feeling like Amora only said it was incorrect because he spotted it.

“Yes, but this is a nightmare curse. Because if it hit my father I doubt it would have been a body changing effect.” Amora said to Reqshal.

“Well okay, Princess. Find the Nightmare one.” Reqshal responded.

“I’m not a Princess, and you don’t tell me what to do.” Amora said to Reqshal.

Amora looked through the book shelfs and found a densely coloured text script on curses.

She went through it and found ‘Nightmare’. Amora read through the pages and found loads and loads of information on the curse, written by the Infamous Great Witch Gloria.

“There is no way we will be able to read all of this.” Reqshal said looking at how dense the information was.

“Maybe you can’t, but I definitely can.” Amora responded.

“How about you stop insulting me, we are the same person now. So I think it would be better if you played nice with me.” Reqshal said to Amora.

“As if. Once we break this, you take your money and leave. I wouldn’t want to hinder your life of Thievery and Poverty. See look, I already found the page.” Amora said, rolling her finger across it.

“Nightmare Curses are permanent curses. They can not be dispelled or exorcized. Research indicated that the death of the Caster may work in some cases.” An excerpt from the Great Witch also added to the bottom of the page. “This spell is for all those who cross me, may your death be a Nightmare.” The Page read.

Amora transformed into Reqshal.

“Well, that’s not good…” Reqshal said.

Angel Misery 2: Chapter Five

Never-ending Wonderland

Maria sits down at her Computer, drinking a cup of tea as she reads up on the latest news.

“Aiden, did you see this? Apparently there’s a planet in the Galaxy that rains Diamonds.” Maria said to Aiden.

“No, I have not seen that. That’s pretty interesting.” Aiden responds back to Maria as he was repairing the sink of their apartment with his shirt tied around his waist. And sweat on his chest.

Maria looked over to watch Aiden work. “Did I ever tell you how incredible you look, babe?” Maria says to Aiden.

Aiden gets up from underneath the sink and wipes his forehead with his shirt. He then smiles at Maria. “Not in the past half-hour you haven’t.” Aiden said with a smoldering smile as he walked up to Maria.

He then wraps his arm around her waist and brings her in close to him.

His face gets close to hers as they both breathe in each other’s air. “I guess you should deal with me accordingly, Corporal.” Maria says to Aiden.

“I intend to.” Aiden responds as he pushes Maria against the desk that had her computer.

In the Computer Development Club.

“So what are these lines supposed to indicate?” Silvia asked Priya, a member of the Institute for Medical Software Development.

Priya points at the screen. “Well when these lines pike that means greater activity within Maria’s mind. When it dips, or more accurately levels out, that means a transitional stage or a point of inactivity.” Priya explained to Silvia.

“So right now she must be running some sort of Olympic event, maybe she is having a nightmare.” Silvia said as she looked over at Maria.

Maria was laying down in a separate room behind glass. She was connected to a large computer in the room via wires. Priya, a Sophomore, was testing her new device that would be used to resolve sleeplessness in patients with insomnia.

“These readings are unusually high, but not anything to worry about.” Priya added as she continued to take notes with the data she was seeing.

Aiden entered the room after grabbing Maria a bag of Halloween candy the Institute of Culinary Experimentation was giving out.

“Oh! Angeal! You are back already! That was fast.” Silvia said to Aiden. He handed her a bag of candy, and offered one to Priya.

“Thank you, but no thanks.” Priya said to Aiden.

“So, how long is she going to be under for this experiment?” Aiden asked Priya.

“Not much longer. She has already entered and exited REM sleep within the first 10 minutes of closing her eyes. Now she should be entering Deep Sleep. Once these lines level out completely we can go in and wake her up.” Priya responded to Aiden.

“It would be quite interesting to see the readings you put out if you were in Maria’s place.” Silvia said to Aiden with a small smile on her face.

“I’m sure there would be absolutely no indication that I was even ever asleep.” Aiden said to Silvia with his typical straight face.

The lines on Priya’s Monitor then began to jump back up.

Priya immediately tried to diagnose the issue. Silvia took notice.

“Something’s wrong?” Silvia asked.

Priya was checking the lines leading up to her computer. “Not wrong per say, just extremely unusual now.” 

“How so?” Aiden asked.

“Well the indicators say that she entered another REM cycle, which she shouldn’t have for about another 90 minutes. So there must be an issue with the monitoring devices.” Priya said to Aiden.

“I can take a look.” Aiden suggested it to Priya.

“It’s fine, this is very delicate technology. Afterall you both are still freshmen, and not even a part of this Institute, so you’d likely have no idea where things are supposed to be.” Priya responded to Aiden.

Silvia and Aiden looked at the Monitor. Maria’s signals were increasing a bit more, and were lasting longer.

Priya got up from under the desk. “Okay, that might have been the issue.” Priya said before looking up at the monitors.

She looked visibly more confused.

“Was something supposed to change?” Silvia asked Priya.

“This is now becoming beyond unusual.” Priya said with a low voice. “You two don’t touch anything, I am going to ask for some help.” Priya said to Aiden and Silvia as she got up from her seat and left the room.

“What do you think that is about?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“If I can correctly surmise, the readings would indicate that Maria has now transitioned to a non-sleep state. Which shouldn’t be the case because she is obviously sleeping. So Priya felt the issue stemmed from her Computer, but she saw that was not the case.” Aiden explained to Silvia.

“So this is probably Maria’s fault, right?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“Probably. Or rather, the electric stimulus they gave Maria before putting her to sleep.” Aiden responded.

Back in Maria’s Dream.

Maria drove in her high speed racing car using her feet to steer. She had a bow and arrow in her hand and was shooting clay plates out of the sky.

“Maria ‘The Magnificent’ Li has taken the lead in this 100 Kilometer Derby! I have never in all my years of Announcing ‘Monster Madness Merciless Massacre Monday’ seen such an incredible performance. She is truly the Goddess of this Sport!” The Announcer of the Event called out.

The crowd cheered for Maria, and she continued to her next lap.

Aiden sat in the passenger seat of Maria’s vehicle.

“Looks like another 6 Clay Disks are about to shoot out from your right.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria aimed in that direction. “Already seen them incoming.” Maria responded.

She squinted one of her eyes and shot and loaded six arrows crushing the disks.

“Amazing! While the other racers have to stop or slow down their vehicles Maria continues to travel full speed!” The announcer yells out with all of his might.

“You see that Aiden!? Another flawless shot.” Maria said to Aiden as she continued to steer with her feet.

“I wouldn’t expect less from my Girlfriend!” Aiden said with a gleeful smile on his face.

“And don’t you forget it.” Maria pointed her arrow at Aiden and laughed. They were clearly having fun.

 Then the sky went red, and the cars behind Maria all crashed. Maria’s vehicle then vanished and she was caught by Aiden.

“Wait! What happened!?” Maria asked, feeling confused with how the world suddenly changed. She looked over at Aiden. “Is this a heavenly being’s action?” Maria asked Aiden. But he was no longer there.

“Aiden!?” Maria called out. The vehicles around her then caught on fire. “Aiden! Where are you!?” Maria called out.

Then a dark figure appeared behind Maria. Then formed into Silvia.

“What’s wrong Maria?” The imposter of Silvia asked Maria.

“Where’s Aiden? I mean, Angeal!? Have you seen him?” Maria asked Silvia.

“Angeal? Who is that?” Silvia responded.

“You know who Angeal is, the guy who was always around me.” Maria tried to explain to Silvia.

Silvia shook her head.

“You know who I am talking about! He is my best friend!” Maria loudly said to Silvia.

 “Oh you mean the imaginary one we created as an experiment?” Silvia said to Maria.

“Imaginary? No he wasn’t imaginary.” Maria angrily responded.

“Yeah he was, you kept saying that you flew to different restaurants with him during lunch, and stayed at his house, and everything, but really all you did was go to the park and pretend.” Silvia explained to Maria.

Maria backed up away from Silvia. “No…” Maria then stood to her feet. “You are lying! He is real! I am going to look for him.” Maria yelled out.

“It’s pointless Maria. There is nobody by that name!” Silvia called back.

Then the people in the stands started to chant. “Imaginary! Imaginary! Imaginary!” 

In the Lab Priya came back with a Junior by the name of Eva Dorey.

Eva immediately looked up at the monitors. “Hmm, that is odd. Let me take a look.” Eva rolled up her sleeves and went into the room that Maria was in.

Silvia and Aiden watched as the two tried to diagnose an issue.

“What do you think could be happening?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with their machine, I think it has something to do with the initial stimulus.” Aiden responded to Silvia.

“Oh, then they must have messed with her brain somehow. I wonder what she is going through.” Silvia said loudly.

“Knowing Maria, she probably has it under control.” Aiden said to Silvia.

Eva then stood over Maria. She checked to see if the suctions were secured to Maria’s head. She moved them slightly.

“Has there been any change on the monitors?” Eva asked Priya.

Priya looked over at them. “No, there has been no changes.” Priya responded.

“We should probably just wake her up, and diagnose what is happening without having someone hooked up to it.” Eva recommended Priya.

“Sure, that’s probably the best move.” Priya agreed.

Eva grabbed a bottle of gas and placed it over Maria’s mouth and nose.

Maria breathes in the gas.

The readings on the monitors then spiked.

“Whoa! This is not good!” Priya said, trying to keep the computer from overloading.

“What happened?” Eva asked Priya.

“Her state didn’t change, it was just amplified.” Priya responded to Eva.

Eva looked down at Maria.

“Why hasn’t she woken up?” Eva asked Priya.

“I don’t know, that gas should have pinched her receptors.” Priya said to Eva.

“So is she stuck asleep? Like in a Coma?” Silvia asked Priya.

“No, she is not in a Coma. Don’t worry.” Priya said to Silvia. “We may need to restart the device and just wait for it to reboot.” Priya said to Eva.

“I agree, there doesn’t seem to be anything wrong with the actual devices. We will have to check with the medical institute to see what sleeping stimulus they used.” Eva said to Priya. Eva left out of the room that Maria was in.

Priya and Eva then began to clean up.

Silvia looked at them confused. “Ah… so what now?” Silvia asked.

“The experiment is done. We can’t do any more testing.” Priya responded to Silvia.

“So, are we just supposed to let Maria sleep there? Or what?” Silvia asked quickly.

“You can leave her there or take her back to her room, she should wake up when her body wants to. We just no longer need her service.” Eva said to Silvia.

“Wow, unbelievable.” Silvia responded.

“What? Are we supposed to rebuild the entire machine to wake her up, then give her a cup of coffee and a foot massage. There’s nothing else we can do. She is just sleeping.” Ava said to Silvia.

“Just because you turned off your monitors doesn’t mean that those readings disappeared. What did they mean?” Silvia asked.

“Who knows, we have never seen anything that high. This is the first time we ran this experiment.” Ava said to Silvia.

The two argued back and forth to one another as Aiden went to the back and picked up Maria. As Maria laid in his arms Aiden tried to wake her up.

Back in Maria’s dream.

Maria was hiding behind some buildings as the crowd were trying to hunt her down. They blamed her for setting fire to her opponents during the derby.

“Where is the Demon Woman!” The crowd yelled looking for Maria.

“Aiden, where are you?” Maria cried softly to herself. Too scared to make a noise, fearing to be caught.

“Wake up, Maria.” Maria heard the sky say to her.

Maria looked around for that voice that sounded like Aiden’s.

“Is that you Aiden?” Maria asked.

“Wake up…” The voice said again.

“Aiden, where are you?” Maria asked.

“You are sleeping. You need to wake up.” Aiden’s voice said to Maria.

“I’m sleeping?” Maria asked.

“Wake up” Aiden’s voice called out.

“Well if this is a dream, then.” Maria said as she stepped out into the crowd. “I’m here!” Maria yelled out.

The crowd immediately shot arrows at Maria.

She sat up quickly inhaling as much air as she could. She felt around her body for the places she was shot. 

After she checked, she felt immediate relief.

“Oh thank you! That was just a bad dream.” Maria thought to herself. She looked around, and saw that it was the middle of the day.

She was  a bit confused. She was back at home, laying in her own bed. “When did I get back home…” Maria thought to herself.

“Maria! Lunch is ready for you downstairs.” Maria’s mom called up to her.

“Coming!” Maria responded. Maria jumped out of her bed and ran down stairs.

“Oh sweet! Deli Sandwiches!” Maria said, grabbing her a plate. Alison sat at the table already grabbing a second handful of chips.

Maria then grabbed it from it. 

“Hey! What was that for!” Alison yelled out at Maria.

“Don’t eat all of them, you’ll get fat.” Maria said to Alison.

“Speak for yourself Fatty.” Alison responded by grabbing the bag too.

They both pulled for control of the snack.

Maria’s mom grabbed it. “Stop, you two behave. There’s plenty left for the both of you.” Maria’s mom said pouring Maria a serving and Alison a serving.

Maria jumped up and sat at the table.

“Do either of you have any Summer Homework left before school starts again?” Maria’s mom asked.

“Oh right, it is Summer Vacation. No wonder I am back home.” Maria thought to herself, as she took a bite out of her sandwich.

“I finished all of my Homework during the first week of Summer Vacation.” Alison responded to her mom.

“And what about you, Maria?”

“Remember, I’m in Highschool now, they didn’t assign us Summer Homework.” Maria responded with her mouth slightly full.

“That’s right, to Sequoia High School.” Maria’s mom said taking out some juice from the refrigerator.

Maria shook her head. “No, remember, I go to…” Maria began to say but she could not remember what it was she was trying to say. “… wait. I forgot my train of thought.” Maria responded.

“Probably all those video games you play, it’s rotting away in your brain.” Maria’s mom said pouring out the juice.

“No way, I placed in the top 5 of the school last year. If anything, I am becoming smarter.” Maria said to her mom.

“Ah, that reminds me. You can sleep over at your best friend, Leanne’s house tomorrow.” Maria’s mom told Maria.

“Awesome!” Maria cheered.

“Aww, so that means I can have the TV for myself?” Alison asked.

“Sure it does.” Maria’s mom responded.

“Nice.” Alision said.

Back in Reality.

Aiden and Silvia walked back to the dorms with Maria still in his arms.

“Is she really not waking up? She is not normally a heavy sleeper.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“This is definitely out of Character for Maria. She would not sleep through meal time.” Aiden responded to Silvia.

“They might have actually put her in a coma.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“That would be neglectful on their part.” Aiden responded to Silvia.

“I don’t care if they are upperclassmen, they should have had a back-up plan just in case something like this happened.” Silvia said feeling a bit upset with how the two spoke to her. Silvia then took in a few deep breaths. “But first, we just need to lay her down, and think of something. Since right now it looks like you are either carrying a dead girl around, or she is your girlfriend. Which neither are acceptable.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“I suppose so.” Aiden responded. As they both entered the Elevator.

Silvia and Aiden walked down the hall to Room 808. Ventus was waiting outside the door.

“Oh wow! What happened? Is everything okay?” Ventus asked.

“She is just sleeping, it’s nothing too serious.” Silvia said to Ventus.

“Sleeping? Why is she sleeping? Did someone drug her?!” Ventus said with some force in his voice, suspecting it were those upperclassmen boys again.

“No, it was for an experiment, nothing that malicious.” Silvia responded.

“Oh.” Ventus said softly. “So I guess I should be quieter.” 

“That’s the thing. I don’t think it matters. She seems to be stuck asleep.” Silvia said to Ventus.

Ventus looked at Aiden. “And you couldn’t wake her up?” Ventus asked Aiden.

Aiden gestured his eyes to Silvia. Trying to indicate that Silvia doesn’t know what Aiden can do, and that Ventus should try to keep silent about topics like that.

“Oh, right of course.” Ventus responded. “Mind if I try something?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“What do you have in mind?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Well what if Maria doesn’t know she is sleeping. If that’s the case then her brain will never try to wake itself up. Like if we were all in some sort of dream right now, we would have no way of knowing without someone from the outside entering in.” Ventus tried to explain.

“You have something like that?” Silvia asked.

“Well, I’ve been working on something for the past week. It was so that me and Angeal could share a dream, but he never wanted to try it out.” Ventus told Silvia.

“That’s oddly something we needed for an occasion like this.” Silvia responded to Ventus.

“What can we expect, I am always prepared.” Ventus joked as he went to Room 888 to pick up the device.

Back in Maria’s Dream.

Maria walks down the halls of Sequoia High School, she is carrying her books in front of her on her way to Literary Studies Class.

She then gets knocked over by a group of upperclassmen. 

“Watch where we’re going, loser.” They say to Maria and leave her laying on the floor.

Maria gets up quickly. “Knock them all out for me!” Maria says aloud pointing at the upperclassmen. But then she realized that she was talking to herself, and wondered why she said that.

“You’re a strange one aren’t you?” A tall guy came, and handed Maria a sheet of loose paper that she dropped when she fell.

Maria grabbed the paper from his hand. “You don’t have to comment on it.” Maria says to the guy.

“You’re right. I didn’t need to say anything, but I just wanted an excuse to speak to you.” The guy responded to Maria.

Maria looked up at his face. He had the appearance of Aiden, but more Human in appearance. Maria snickered.

“Were you trying to talk to me because you have some sort of crush on me?” Maria grinned.

“Well, ah…” The Aiden look-alike responded to Maria. He was too nervous to actually answer her.

Maria then handed him her books. “You can begin by carrying this for me to my next class. Sounds good?” Maria said to the guy.

“Sure. I don’t have any problem with this.” He responded. They both then started walking with Maria placing her hands in her pockets.

“Ah, by the way. My name is Angeal.” He said to Maria.

“Ange what?” Maria said half paying attention to him.

“Angeal. I’m a freshman this year. I actually sit behind you in Calculus.” Angeal told Maria.

“Really? Oh, I didn’t even notice you. But…” Maria then quickened her pace and stepped in front of him. She blocked him from moving forward. “But, you do seem oddly familiar. Do you live close to me?” Maria asked Angeal.

“I don’t think so. I have only ever seen you in class.” Angeal responded.

“Okay, he must have been a different person then.” Maria said, dropping the conversation.

“Probably. I think I would have noticed if I lived close to you.” Angeal said to Maria.

The bell then started to ring. “Dang! Hurry up! I’m going to be late!” Maria said, rushing down the hall to her class. The hallway seemed to stretch as Maria was running down it.

She felt like she was not running as fast as she usually ran. Angeal then picked her up and ran with her on his back.

“Now we are getting somewhere!” Maria called out.

When she got into her classroom it suddenly turned dark.

She walked around the empty class. “We must have taken longer than expected.” Maria said checking the empty desks.

“What do you mean? We are investigating a demon sighting in the school.” Angeal said to Maria. 

“Oh, you’re right. I must have been zoning out or something. So what did you find, my assistant?” Maria asked Angeal.

Angeal pulled out his notebook. “Well, we found black slime in the hallway leading up to the girl’s bathroom. Then we found a sigil that was written in blood in 1 of the trash bins. The sigil was partially burnt but we were able to track down the author of it to this classroom.” Angeal explained to Maria.

“Of course.” Maria responded. She then looked closely at the desks. “I feel like it is probably this one.” Maria said pointing to a random desk in the classroom.

Angeal walked over to it and checked the insides. He found a notebook with a list of magical spells. “Detective, I think you should see this.” Angeal said, flipping through the pages.

Maria grabbed the book. “How to summon the Demon King Baldor Alonuk. Write a pact with the Lord of Darkness in the signatory’s blood. Sacrifice…” Maria began to read. “This is damning evidence.” Maria told Angeal.

“What should we do with it now? It seems she already created the pact, should we look for the potential victim?” Angeal said.

“If I were to guess, they will likely either be in the lunchroom or the gym.” Maria responded.

“Why’d that detective?” Angeal asked.

“I just have a feeling.” Maria responded. They then began to run to the lunchroom.

“Come here! It will be over before you even know it. Don’t you want to be part of something greater?” The cursed girl said while holding a knife in her hand. She was looking for one of her classmates.

“Stop right there!” Maria yelled out.

The cursed girl looked at Maria and began running.

“Assistant!” Maria yelled out.

“Got it!” He said, jumping out at the girl. The girl stabbed Angeal and he fell to the ground.

Maria hurdled over him, giving chase. “Pitiful!” She said as she moved.

Maria followed the girl through the hall. “You can’t stop his emergence! He will cleanse the world of this evil!” The cursed girl said to Maria.

“I can stop it, as long as I stop you!” Maria yelled out and grabbed the cursed girl. “It’s over!” Maria said to her.

The cursed girl then began laughing. Maria looked confused. “It went exactly as planned!” The girl said to Maria.

Angeal then smacked Maria across the head with a cast iron pan and knocked her out.

Maria then woke up back in her bed suddenly. She was breathing heavily. She looked at her hands, and checked her body.

“Oh good. It was just a nightmare.” Maria thought to herself.

“Honey! Come down for Breakfast!” Maria’s mom called up to her.

“Coming!” Maria responded. Maria rushed down the stairs still wearing her Pajamas. She sat down at the table.

Maria’s mom pulled away her plate. “Brush your teeth first and change out of your PJs.” Maria’s mom said. Alison was already at the table eating her toast.

Back in Reality.

Ventus brought the device to connect to Maria’s head.

“So let me explain how this is going to work. We are going to translate your thoughts into the thoughts of Maria, so that you can control yourself within Maria’s mind. And we are going to transfer Maria’s thoughts to your head so you can see what is happening.” Ventus explained.

“What you mean is, that if we are connected to her, it’s only a copy of our thoughts going to her, and a copy of her thoughts going to us. So no direct contact?” Silvia asked.

“That’s basically it. I haven’t developed it enough for you to have direct access to her mind. So you likely won’t see any traumatic experiences or memories that she is not currently thinking of.” Ventus responded to Silvia.

“Interesting. And you wanted to use this so that I could see your dreams?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Pretty much.” Ventus said, turning on the device. “Now, of course I can’t go in myself because I have to monitor the device. I’ll have to calibrate it to the languages of whichever of you decide to volunteer.” Ventus said, looking back and forth between Aiden and Silvia.

“Angeal, I think you should go in, you are her best friend and all. So you’d probably be able to navigate her mind the best.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“I doubt that Ventus’ device will work on me. And in terms of similarity, physically and likely mentally, you are more similar to Maria. So the translation process would likely run more smoothly.” Aiden responded to Silvia.

“I also think you should be the one to go in, Silvia. Just in case we have to move both Maria and the person connected, it would be a lot easier to have Angeal help.” Ventus said to Silvia.

“But who knows what kinds of thoughts are in Maria’s head. That’s not something I want to see.” Silvia responded to Ventus.

“I completely trust that you will know how to handle any situation Maria thinks about. Afterall, you are one, if not the smartest and most adaptable person in our entire class.” Ventus said to Silvia.

Silvia picked up the helmet. “Well, you aren’t wrong. Okay, I’ll go in there, tell Maria that she is dreaming, and she is going to wake up.” Silvia said to both Ventus and Aiden.

“Sounds great. Now just lay in your bed, and I am going to tie you down.” Ventus told Silvia.

“Whoa, why are you doing that?” Silvia asked.

“It’s just to make sure your muscles don’t cause you to run out the room, if you see something scary.” Ventus explained.

“Okay, well I trust you. Don’t try to get any bright ideas.” Silvia told Ventus.

“Wouldn’t even think about it.” Ventus said.

Silvia then calmed her mind as Ventus turned on the device. Maria’s head was placed into the other end.

“Now say these items in this order. Yellow… Strawberries… Telephone… Monkey… Fire… Airplane… electricity… Happy.” Ventus said, and Silvia repeated. “Good, it is now calibrated. Now I am going to send your thoughts to Maria, and transmit her thoughts to you.” Ventus said to Silvia.

“Sure.” Silvia responded. Aiden watched as the two handled the situation.

“And, safe travels.” Ventus said to Silvia as she now had access to Maria’s thoughts.

“Where on Earth am I?” Silvia thought to herself. She was in the middle of a park. The edges of the world seem to fade in and out.

Silvia looked around to try and find Maria. In the distance she found someone running back and forth in the pond.

“Maria?” Silvia asked. 

“Oh no! They are hunting me!” Maria yelled out. She created a gun in her hand and shot at Silvia. Silvia ran and took cover.

“Don’t shoot me you idiot! It’s me, Silvia!” Silvia yelled out.

“Who?” Maria called back out.

“Silvia! You know, your classmates from Middle School and Highschool. We are friends with Angeal and Ventus.” Silvia tried to explain to Maria.

“Angeal? You mean the Demon Summoner from my dream?” Maria asked.

“The what?” Silvia was confused.

“Oh, you must have been his accomplice, and I was having a vision of the future. Well then I am going to stop you here and now!” Maria said, running out from her hiding spot to give chase to Silvia.

“Stop chasing after me! You are dreaming!” Silvia yelled out to Maria. 

“I was, but now I know it was a vision! You get back here you murderer!” Maria said, shooting another shot at Silvia.

The bullet ripped through Silvia’s Arm. 

Ventus and Aiden watched Silvia’s body to a noticeable jump.

“Shoot, I need a keyboard, or a laptop.” Ventus said, looking around.

Aiden handed Ventus Maria’s laptop.

“Thanks.” Ventus said, hooking it up to the device.

Silvia laid on the ground, now having been transported to their old Middle School. She walked down the halls, leaving a trail of blood behind her. She entered the bathroom.

Silvia washed her wound in the sink and tied it with paper towels.

“Dang, she is not listening.” Silvia thought to herself, trying to stay quiet.

“Come out, come out wherever you are!” Maria called out in the halls.

Silvia laid against the wall on the corner in the same direction of the bathroom door.

Maria walked down the hall and stopped in front of the bathroom. “Hmm, this is where we found the Sigil in my vision. I bet she is writing the Pact right now.” Maria thought to herself.

Maria opened the door slowly and looked in the bathroom. She couldn’t see anyone. Maria was suspicious and continued to keep looking for a few more seconds.

Silvia had her hands over her mouth.

“Guess it wasn’t this bathroom then.” Maria thought to herself. Silvia felt Maria around the corner. And her blood was beginning to soak through her bandages. A drop was beginning to form.

“Please don’t drip, hurry up and close the door.” Silvia thought to herself. 

Maria then began to walk away from the door.

Then Silvia’s blood hit the floor.

Maria paused. “Something just dripped.” Maria thought to herself. Maria then opened the door again, and entered the bathroom. “I see you.” Maria said as she got closer and closer to where Silvia was. “No use trying to hide, I am going to blow you away when I see you.” Maria said, trying to intimidate Silvia.

“You have full control over yourself in Maria’s thoughts. If you are in trouble, just think of it and it will happen, for yourself of course.” Silvia got a message from Ventus.

Maria then turned the corner and pointed the weapon directly at Silvia. But there was no one there.

“Hmm, I could have sworn.” Maria thought to herself. She then started to kick down the doors to the stalls.

Silvia had turned invisible. “Thankfully that worked.” Silvia was relieved.

Maria continued to kick down the doors. Silvia slowly walked behind her. Maria then kicked down the last door.

“Rats! No one is here!” Maria said, confused. The world then began to change.

“Oh no!” Silvia thought. She then grabbed Maria behind her back and tried to get her in a full nelson.

Maria then started to fight back against Silvia.

“Get off me you Demon Summoner!” Maria said to Silvia. Maria slammed Silvia against the walls of the bathroom, but Silvia was not letting go.

“You are dreaming! Wake up!” Silvia yelled out at Maria.

“Get off me!” Maria yelled. The World then changed and they were both in a Subway Station across the world. In the middle of the train tracks.

There was a light at the end of the tunnel.

“What are you doing!” Silvia said, still holding Maria, jumping up out of the way of the train.

The two then started to wrestle on the ground. Silvia was trying to pull the gun out of Maria’s hand.

“Let go!” Maria yelled out. She then started kicking Silvia. Maria busted Silvia’s lip. Silvia touched her lip and saw blood. 

“Okay! You asked for it!” Silvia said tackling Maria. She then started to punch Maria in the face. Maria grabbed Silvia’s hair and started returning punches.

“I am getting tired of you! Your dream is stupid!” Silvia said to Maria. As she continued to hit her.

“I don’t need to get lectured by some tool of a demon!” Maria responded. Maria then bit down on Silvia’s arm and Silvia pulled away.

“Whatever, I know this is a dream, so.” Silvia then started to create a fireball with her hand.

The people in the Subway then began to run.

“So that is the power the Demon gave you?” Maria asked. “I knew it.” Maria added.

“You know nothing!” Silvia responded. Silvia then shot the fireball at Maria. Burning her arm and tossing her to the other side of the subway.

Maria laid on the ground in pain.

Silvia then grabbed Maria’s shirt and charged up another fireball. “This is a dream after all, so it’s not like any of this matters.” Silvia said to Maria.

“If it’s a dream, then I should be able to do this!” Maria responded by sending out a shockwave knocking Silvia back.

Silvia now laid on the ground, she coughed up a bit of blood having impacted the concrete ceiling.

Maria then looked at her hands. “Oh, so this is a dream.” Maria said.

“Finally your thick skull understood.” Silvia responded. She collapsed on the ground.

Maria then came to her senses. “Wait!? Are you the real Silvia!? I am so sorry!” Maria said, rushing to Silvia and grabbing her.

“Just wake up. We can discuss this later.” Silvia said in pain.

Maria then blinked a few times and found that she was in Room 808. She had Ventus’ device over her head. She felt exhausted. Maria looked around.

“Am I awake?” Maria asked.

Aiden and Ventus looked over at Maria. “Welcome back to Reality.” Aiden said to Maria.

“How long was I out?” Maria asked.

“About 7 hours. You were just supposed to take a 30 minute nap.” Aiden said to Maria.

“7 Hours! Wow! No wonder it felt so long. I felt like I was in my dream world for years.” Maria responded to Aiden.

Ventus un-tied Silvia. She then got up immediately from her bed, and rushed over to Maria.

“I want to hit you so badly!” Silvia said to Maria.

“Hey, the dream you put up a good fight.” Maria laughed.

“It wasn’t the dream version of me, it was the actual me. I went inside your dream to wake you up!” Silvia said to Maria.

“Really! How?” Maria asked excitedly.

“Ventus created a device that translates your thoughts to someone one and translates their thoughts to you. So essentially, you were able to interact with one another in the dream.” Aiden explained to Maria.

“That’s awesome, Ventus! Now that you know it works. What are you going to do with it?” Maria asked Ventus.

“Not sure. It has a few issues, like how there can only be one driver. If I made it better, I could have given Silvia control of your dream. But I suppose I can add that in a future update.” Ventus responded.

Silvia then felt her lip again. “Good. The damages you did didn’t translate to the real world. Why on Earth did you shoot me!?” Silvia asked Maria.

“I thought you were the enemy to the planet. I had to do what needed to be done.” Maria tried to explain.

“You didn’t remember my face?” Silvia asked.

“Honestly, everything felt clear in the dream, but still had a bit of fuzz. I am barely remembering what I even was dreaming about.” Maria responded.

“Well, if we ever do this again, you are going to let me shoot you. Then I am going to say we are even. You were like some sort of serial killer in your dreams. How do you even get a good night’s rest.” Silvia asked.

Maria shrugged.

Ventus then started to pack up his device. “Looks like the future is now on the correct path, so I can put this away for now.” Ventus said to the group.

Aiden then stood up in front of Ventus.

“That was impressive. There wasn’t much I could do, but you found a solution for it. Maybe I will give your device a try.” Aiden said to Ventus.

Ventus looked down and saw Aiden’s hand. Ventus grabbed it.

“Then it’s a plan.” Ventus responded. Then he began to exit the room.

“Wait, I’ll come along with you.” Silvia said to Ventus. Then the two of them walked down the hall discussing the future plans with the device.

Maria and Aiden were in Room 808 alone.

“So, why didn’t you come in there and rescue me, or better yet, why did you allow me to sleep that long?” Maria asked Aiden.

“I attempted to wake you up, but your body just refused to even attempt to get up. It was no longer in a coma state, it just wasn’t registering that you could wake up. And I didn’t rescue you because I doubt that Ventus device would work on me. And with Silvia in the room, there would have just been unnecessary questions.” Aiden told Maria.

“These are fair points. But what I really think is your true reason, is that if you were in my dreams, I would have had more Abilities and Powers than you.” Maria said to Aiden with a devilish smile on her face.

“I don’t think that is true.” Aiden said to Maria.

“How can you have more power than me in my own dream? There’s no way. We are just going to have to use Ventus’ device to see if that’s true.” Maria joked with Aiden.

“I am not interested in testing that. I would rather be a passive observer. And there is nothing I can learn from your dreams. I already know everything there is to know about you as your best friend.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Maybe. But the you that was in my dream was pretty pathetic. Not saying that’s how I think of you… but I can imagine the situation playing out exactly the same.” Maria laughed.

“Certainly.” Aiden then stood up. “You must be hungry. Do you want to go out to eat?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria felt her stomach. “Actually, I am pretty hungry. I am in the mood for something hefty.” Maria described to Aiden.

“Then I will take us to a late night steak house then.” Aiden said to Maria. He then began to wake out of room 808.

Maria was alone in the room. She looked around, still feeling suspicious. She pointed her hand out. “Fireball go!” Maria said to herself. But nothing came out.

She then grinned at her own hand. “I guess this is reality.” Maria thought. “Hey wait up!” She called out to Aiden as she gave chase.

Then the door to Room 808 began to shut. Then a small spark of fire appeared where Maria tried to summon it. Then the door closed completely.

Yaooan: Tale of Fate – Chapter Two

Yaooan and Randiantsi stood outside of the cave. It had a wide entrance that gave an ominous feeling. Even without being able to see a few meters inside, the sensation of the place was of intense danger.

“I don’t think we should go any further…” Randiantsi said as they both looked into the dark abyss in front of them.

“Yea, I think you are right. If I had more control over my power I’m sure this would not be an issue.” Yaooan responded.

“Same here.” Randiantsi agreed. They both then backed up away from the entrance and decided to head towards the ocean instead.

“I hear the ocean is a good place to grind for EXP. There’s like a billion fish just eager to die with a single blast, or a throw of a needle!” Randiantsi said as she tossed her needle into the ocean and pulled out a fish.

Yaooan clapped, “Wow impressive. I see that you did some practice while I was in class.” Yaooan said to Randiantsi.

“Don’t you have school tomorrow, why aren’t you asleep?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan as they were both shooting fish in the shallows.

“I have very bad dreams at night, so I prefer to stay awake. Doing this seems better than watching videos all night anyways.” Yaooan responded.

They both continued to grind, and were stacking up on fish and fish bones. “That doesn’t sound very healthy, we can talk about it if you’d like.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan.

“Nah, just hanging out makes me feel better, my place is like crazy quiet, it deafening.” Yaooan said, leaving out the part about the sound of fighting being the only noise she hears,  because that is a huge indicator of where she lives.

Randiantsi then stopped. “Hey, Vani. I know we just met, and that we met just in this game. But you’re my friend , if you need to talk or just to hang out, I’m here.” Randiantsi addressed Yaooan.

“Same here Randiantsi, you’re my friend tooi.” Yaooan responded. She then received a message from Rider. “Geez Rider, do you not get a hint!” Yaooan said out loud.

“Oh what’s wrong?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“It’s Rider again, he’s like super annoying right now.” Yaooan responded. “He just said that he couldn’t stop thinking about what happened today and wants to make it up tomorrow.” 

“I’m guessing he means in person right?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Yeah in person, same place where I first logged in…” Yaooan told Randiantsi with audible annoyance in her voice.

“Dang, you must be breathtaking in person.” Randiantsi said as she shuffled through her bag.

“Trust me, I am not. I think he just wants to be liked by everyone.” Yaooan says as she was also preparing her bag for the return trip.

“Well, let’s sell these and get some mad cash!” Randiantsi said with her usual cheery voice. They both were completely filled to the brim with fish in their bags. They proceeded towards the Center Hub.

Once they arrived they took the route leading them to the SHopping District, and then into the Fish Market. They slammed the bags full of fish on the cashier’s desk.

“There you are, tons of fish for your enjoyment!” Randiantsi said to the NPC.

“Well let’s see what we have here.” He leaned over to examine the fish. “It’s impressive how little damage you both caused to these fish.” The Shop NPC was impressed by the haul. “Hmm, for this amount and this quality, I will give you 200 Rare Crystals.” He quoted them.

“200 Rare Crystals! What are you trying to do!? Cheat us!” Randiantsi said to the NPC.

“What are you doing? 200 Rare Crystals is an insane amount.” Yaooan whispered to Randiantsi.

“Yeah, but I bet he will give us an extra 5 Rare Crystals if we haggle him a bit.” Randiantsi responded to Yaooan also in a whisper.

“Fine, 210 Rare Crystals, but I am not going any higher than that! I have a shop to run.” The NPC said to Randiantsi.

“Sure, we will take it. But I got my eyes on you man.” Randiantsi said to the NPC as she gestured her two fingers from her eyes to his eyes.

They both walked away with an extreme haul.

“Here, that’s 105 for you, and 105 for me. Now we can go out and try some of that fancy food I hear this place has.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan as she transferred money to her.

“Why would we eat food here? It’s not like it’ll affect us in our actual bodies.” Yaooan asked Randiantsi.

Randiantsi turned around quickly and pointed at Yaooan. “That’s where you are wrong, we are able to taste while we are in this world, since all of our senses can be simulated within our brains. Which includes taste.” Randiantsi pointed at her own tongue.

“SO we can actually taste the food in Rutanu?” Yaooan asked.

“Yeah, as much as we can see in Rutanu, hear Rutanu, feel Rutanu and so on. We can taste it!” Randiantsi said, gesturing wide.

Yaooan picked up some grass to see if everything had been programmed with taste. She placed a bit into her mouth, and immediately spit it out. “Bleh! That was horrible! Oh that tastes like rotted fish carcass.” Yaooan said, scraping her tongue.

“How do you know what that tastes like?” Randiantsi laughed.

“Hurry up! Let’s find somewhere to replace this taste.” Yaooan said looking through the map. “There, it’s not far. Looks like they have Soba.” Yaooan said heading in that direction with her tongue still poking out.

Yaooan and Randiantsi entered the place and saw a crowd of people surrounding a table in the restaurant.

“What do you think is happening there, Randiantst?” Yaooan asked and then proceeded to order Yaki Soba.

“Beats me, I have as much of a clue as you.” Randiantsi responded.

They both kept looking at what was causing such a ruckus. Yaooan then caught a glimpse of his face.

Yaooan was stunned. She shook Randiantsi’s shoulder. “It’s Yuski! He’s in the restaurant with us!” Yaooan said to Randiantsi, she was awestruck.

“Yuski? Whose that?” Randiantsi responded as she received her Soba.

Yaooan was about to reply, but then the crowd of people opened up. Following this Yuski began to walk towards the two girls.

“Oh dear, how could you have not heard of me?” Yuski said to Randiantsi.

“I just haven’t, are you some sort of NPC?” Randiantsi responded to him with a bit of soap in her mouth.

“Haha! Funny. You’re a funny one. How about you watch me in action? It’s a shame that not everyone has gotten the pleasure to see me fight.” Yuski then handed Randiantsi a Legendary Ticket to the Fighting Arena. “This is a front row seat to my fights tomorrow. Please come and watch.” Yuski added.

“I’m not going to watch alone, I’m in a party with Vani here.” Randiantsi said to Yuski, grabbing Yaooan’s shoulder.

“Oh, my apologies. Then there are two. And Waiter, please allow me to pay for their meals.” Yuski went on saying.

“We have that taken care of, thank you!” Randiantsi said to Yuski.

“Ha, feisty I see. Well please come, Vani and…” Yuski was trying to get Randiantsi’s name.

“Randiantsi.” Randiantsi responded.

“Wow, we are already finishing each other’s sentences. Well, Vani and Randiantsi, I’ll see you tomorrow at the Stadium. Bye bye.” He said as he left the eatery. Yuski was followed outside by the hordes of people trying to be his pupils.

“Well that’s cool, you just got personally invited to watch Yuski’s match, up close and personal.” Yaooan said to Randiantsi. “Looks like you got yourself a new crush.”

“I’m sure he hands these out like candy.” Randiantsi said before she called out to another guy at the other side of the restaurant. “Hey you! How much are you willing to pay for front row seats to watch Yuski fight?” She asked the random person.

“Hypothetically right? I would say I’d probably cough up maybe 5 Ultra Rare Coins for that.” He replied.

“Well, do you have that much?” She then asked again before being stopped by Yaooan.

“Hey! What are you doing?” Yaooan asked Randiantsi, before she just went and sold the tickets.

“You heard him, he would be willing to pay 5 Ultra Rare Coins. That’s like 50 times what we made today for essentially nothing.” Randiantsi responded back to Yaooan. “Besides, why would I want to go see him run around and beat up other players? I’d rather just do that myself.” Randiantsi explained to Yaooan.

“You know what, I can see your point. It feels kinda rude, but we really didn’t ask for them. He just gave it to us anyway.” Yaooan thought about it, and then agreed with Randiantsi.

“So I have here, two premium, high grade, pristine front row tickets to Yuski’s match tomorrow. I’m willing to sell them to this guy, unless someone is willing to let’s say… pay 8 Ultra Rare Coins for them?” Randiantsi said out loud to the newly arrived group who went to check out the seat that Yuski sat in.

“8 URCs, that’s a steal! Of course I’m willing to give that up,” A guy said in the crowd.

“Well, then it’s 9 URCs from me!” Another guy called out.

“Hero Worship at it’s finest.” Randiantsi laughed to Yaooan.

After Yaooan and Randiantsi finished their meals, they left the restaurant with a delicious taste in their mouths and a pocket of 23 URCs.

“Well, this was a productive night. I am going to head to sleep. I’m sure my mom will be able to tell if I got less than 2 hours of sleep. So I will be off.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan, as she prepared to log off. “Feel free to dig into the party funds, 23 URCs is a lot of cash dollars.” Randiantsi said as she logged off.

Yaooan also decided to log off for the night. She was tired enough to feel like she could sleep immediately without having to lie awake with her own mind. So she disconnected the device from her neck and placed it next to her bed.

“Hmm, 3 hours until classes. I also have detention later, Damn… and did I have homework?” Yaooan thought, and before she knew it, she was asleep.

Yaooan fell into a deep sleep, and she heard crying next to a burning house. She walked closer and noticed that it was herself as a tiny child.

“Aww, what’s wrong little girl?” Yaooan asked the dream version of herself. The little girl pointed at the black figures that were trapped underneath the rubble. Yaooan tried to help, but she was unable to move the debris. The rest of the building then began to collapse. The falling material fell on her as her alarm woke her up.

“Ugh, I hate that dream…” Yaooan said annoyed. She got up slightly groggy, and dragged herself through her morning routine. “I have to set an alarm for myself to stop playing next time. I feel like dirt right now.” Yaooan thought to herself as she cleaned her teeth and made some breakfast for herself.

She had videos on as she ate. “Vlagora still is struggling to keep up with the progress of Marian North. We just keep Winning!” Was the message from the news networks.

“Yeah, whoa, everyone’s winning in Marian North.” Yaooan mockingly said to herself. She then continued to eat and finished her meal.

Yaooan left her home and saw another cute object on the ground. She wanted to pick it up, but chose to leave it on the floor. Considering she didn’t want another cute object destroyed.

“Oh wow Yaooan, you look way worse than yesterday. Did you get hit by a train!?” YauYue said, mocking Yaooan.

“She should get hit by a train, at least that way she will come out looking more attractive.” Paiyi added.They then went on laughing leaving Yaooan in the background.

Yaooan pointed her finger at the girls. “I bet the world would be slightly better if I only was able to.” 

Yaooan thought to herself. She then shook her head. “No, I can’t be thinking like that, they are probably going through stuff in their lives and just are taking it out on me…” Yaooan thought some more. She then continued to school.

“Student 1076. Let me see what weird object you’re trying to sneak into my school this time.” The same gate guard from yesterday said to Yaooan.

“Don’t worry Sir, I didn’t bring anything weird today. Though, tomorrow who knows?” Yaooan said, trying to lighten her mood from the lack of sleep.

“Just get going.” He said to Yaooan before gesturing for her to continue forward.

As she entered the hall her home room was in, she noticed Student 1145 waiting for her. He noticed Yaooan as well and waved at her with a smile.

“Hey 1076! Did you get my messages from yesterday?” Student 1145 asked Yaooan.

“Yes I did. And I gave the items away.” She said walking passed him in the direction of the home room.

“I’m sorry.” He said to Yaooan before she entered the room. “I don’t want to be a stranger to you, can I please have a chance to make things right?” He asked Yaooan.

Yaooan stopped and thought about it. “Ah, whatever…” She thought to herself. “Same place as yesterday, though I am going to be late because I have a half detention period to serve thanks to you.” Yaooan said to Student 1145 before entering the classroom.

Student 1145 celebrated with a small fist pump.

Home room class went as they normally do. Starting off with Yaooan fighting to concentrate on the syllabus for the day, followed by the teacher targeting Yaooan, then forcing her to wait outside the classroom, all the while the other students were literally sleeping in class without any repercussions. Same thing, day in and day out.

Yaooan went to Royal Etiquette, which was basically just a class about how to treat the Royal Family. And learning about all of  their accomplishments over the years. Yaooan could swear that half of the stuff is made up, but she wouldn’t say that out loud.

Following which she promptly went to Anthropology, where she was just learning about the speciation of Humans. From the Proto Humans to Cataran Zuiming. From Ren Genera to Ren Xi Prime. The Tree of Humans Species had Ren Xi at the base splitting off to Ren Xi, Ren Shaole, and Ren Zuiperi. Then continuing from the Ren Xi branch was the Ren Neo, and an asterisk next to the left of the Ren Neo branch indicating a theoretically branch from the Ren Neo. However the statement that the asterisk targeted said. “No bones from this line have been found, however ample eyewitness testimony exists.”

Natural Mathematics came next which is Science and Math mixed into one study. Since the study of both fields is based on discovery of what exists and can be interpreted through equations that can then be used to simulate reality. 

Yaooan concluded that with sufficient equations the universe could be discovered in the palm of your hand.

Yaooan then had to sit through a historical recreation class which is basically just the Royal Etiquette Class except with everyone else included. Simple theatrics really. Following this class Yaooan headed right to detention.

“I don’t think I’ve ever been more bored in my entire life!” Yaooan thought to herself as she wanted to bang her head against the desk. She laid her head down on the top to start her daydream.

“Student 1076! This is a punishment, not nap time. Do school work or just sit erect and quiet.” The detention guard yelled at Yaooan.

“Dang sheesh. Guess I’ll get some Anthropology homework done.” Yaooan thought to herself as she brought out school work from her bag. “I wonder what Titanus and those other guys are doing now? They are probably out torturing another soul.” Yaooan though as she was looking at the heritage tree of the Ren Neo.

Detention continued on for Yaooan until the first half signal rang. Yaooan grabbed her stuff and immediately headed towards the door.

“Hey! Where do you think you are going?” The detention guard asked Yaooan, holding his hand out, to block her way out.

Yaooan pulled out her note from the Vice Dean, showing that she was only supposed to serve a half period, not the full detention. The Guard snatched the note from Yaooan’s hand and scanned it with his device. He then handed it back to Yaooan.

“You’re free to go.” The guard said, lowering his arm.

“Thank you Sir.” Yaooan responded, lifting her bag back onto her shoulders. She then proceeded to head to Area 9 and the Music Rooms.

She ran across the Courtyard, through the cafeteria and into the Area 9 Building.

“Hold on, where are you rushing to?” The Patroller asked Yaooan, stopping her.

“Oh come on…” Yaooan thought to herself. “I’m on my way to the Music Rooms from Detention, I want to use the most down time as possible before the second half of the school day, Sir.” Yaooan tried to explain to the Patroller.

“Sounds like a likely excuse, let me see your note.” He commanded Yaooan.

She handed him the note that was signed by the Guard in Detention.

“Your story checks out. Don’t run in my halls next time.” He handed the note back to her, and Yaooan briskly walked to the Music Rooms.

She entered the room and found everyone with their devices plugged in. She then sat in the corner next to the door and proceeded to also start playing. As she entered the game she found a message from Rider, and another one from Randiantsi. Obviously Yaooan read Randiantsi’s message first.

“Whenever you get on, come on the Fields! I just bought a vehicle with the money we ‘earned’ yesterday.” Randiantsi sent Yaooan.

Yaooan then read Rider’s message. “Hey Vani! Thank you for giving me a second chance today, when you get on please come to the stadium. I have a little show I want to present to you.” Is what Rider’s message read.

“I’m going to meet with Randiantsi first, then we can both head to the stadium.” Yaooan thought to herself as she geared up and headed towards the fields.

“I’m almost at the fields, Randiantsi.” Yaooan sent her. Yaooan then got an immediate reply.

“Oh, just head to the stadium, looks like we got another invite from Yuski to watch him fight. I’m not going in until you are here though.” Randiantsi responded.

“Hmmm, that worked out.” Yaooan thought. And then she received another message from Randiantsi.

“You can summon the Vehicle from the party list. Just bring up the menu and summon it. That’ll definitely guarantee that you get here as fast as possible.” Randiantsi’s message read.

Yaooan then pulled up her menu and noticed it had a new vehicle icon. “Well, there it is. She really bought a vehicle.” Yaooan thought before clicking on the icon. Then a vehicle emerged in front of her. It began as digital white in colour, then it gained a material.

The vehicle had wide wings about 4 times the length of Yaooan’s arm width. A bright Blue and Red Colour throughout the vehicle with an egg shaped seating area with enough room for two people. There also looked to be two ornaments sticking up from the front of the vehicle.

“This thing is enormous!” Yaooan thought to herself, as she entered the seating area of the machine. She then proceeded to move forward. “Oh no, how do I use this thing?” Yaooan pondered as the vehicle continued to move at higher and higher speeds.

She then messed around with the joystick and the vehicle took off into the air. Yaooan was now gliding overhead and saw the wide expanse of Rutanu. Yaooan saw a dark mountainous area in the distance with red clouds surrounding its peak. “Well that looks dangerous.” Yaooan thought before trying to steer her vehicle while it was gliding.

“Okay, the Stadium is right there, so this should be as easy as riding a Walker.” She said thinking out loud. She then pressed her feet on a pedal and the vehicle halted its forward momentum. It remained there only for a second then began dropping out of the sky.

“Oh no, this is bad!” Yaooan yelled before taking her foot off the pedal.The vehicle then stopped dropping and began to hover in place. “Well, let me just steer downward, and I will just let Randiantsi handle the rest.” Yaooan thought as she lifted her feet completely off the floor of the vehicle to ensure she was not touching anything but the joysticks.

Randiantsi spotted Yaooan flying overhead. She also noticed that Yaooan kept circling around her. “What are you doing Vani?!” Randiantsi yelled up to Yaooan.

“I don’t know how to land this thing.” Yaooan responded. She tried to steer the vehicle to the ground with no luck.

Randiantsi then threw her needles up at the vehicle and pulled it down from the air. She placed a modified shield, that had a comfort lining the interior, around Yaooan to protect her from the impact.

The vehicle crashed into the ground, then disappeared. Yaooan’s shield ball rolled towards Randiantsi. Once it was arms length away from her it opened up. Yaooan came out of the ball dizzy.

“Wow, you’ve got a lot stronger,  Randiantsi.” Yaooan looked at her while still feeling a little dizzy.

“Yeah, there is a training center just past the Forest. It cost like 10 SRCs for a Class, so I just spent the day there.” Randiantsi responded.

“Wow, that’s awesome! What…” Yaooan was saying to Randiantsi before Randiantsi interrupted her.

“It would’ve been awesome if Yuski didn’t show up in the middle of my training. I told him I sold his tickets, since he asked me if I was excited to see him fight.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan gesturing Yuski’s motions. “He then sent a quest into my menu which said ‘Go to the Stadium and watch a Pro Match. ’First off, I didn’t know he could even do that. And second off, it’s like a Tier 3 Mission. That’s like a trillion experiences.” Randiantsi kept trying to go on.

“Ha, I think he has something he is trying to prove to you, Randiantsi.” Yaooan then started pushing Randiantsi into the Stadium where the quest activated. The Quest transported them both into the second row of the Stadium seating.

Yuski was fighting random players once again, and was easily winning his matches. Yaooan messaged Rider. “I’m in the Stadium now, what was it you wanted to show me?” Yaooan sent.

“Hey! You actually replied. Well my match is coming up next, so I’ll show you then.” He replied before closing the chat.

“Wait… what?” Yaooan thought to herself and then saw that Rider was walking out onto the fighting arena.

Yuski looked up after winning the last match, bowing to his fans. They erupted in screams. He then saw Randiantsi in the second row. He pointed at her and mouthed out the words: “This match is for you.”.

Randiantsi had a disgusted look on her face as she brought her knees up to her face as she sat.

“This is going to be bad.” Yaooan thought, as she was watching Rider walk out. He was waving his hands to the crowd.

“A 1v1? What? Are you crazy?” Yuski asked Rider.

“Maybe. But I have something to prove. I am not just fighting for myself!” Rider said, pulling out his Sickle.

“I’m not going easy on you this round, so I hope you thought this through.” Yuski responded.

“I won’t be going easy on you either.” Rider said in return.

Yaooan felt second hand embarrassment hearing this exchange.

The fight began and Rider ran at Yuski with a tornado Sickle move. Yuski easily dodged it. Rider tried to quickly turn around for another strike but Yuski spit acid on Rider’s leg. Rider fell as his tendons melted off.

“You can’t rush like that without a secondary plan, like what if I dodged. Then what would have been your next move?” Yuski said to Rider. Yuski landed a short distance away with grace.

Rider, now injured, tried another of his signature moves, he called the Sickle Boomerang. He throws his sickle around the arena covering the perimeter with its motion.

Yuski blows a gust of air at the ground in front of Rider causing a cloud of dust to cover his vision. Yuski proceeded to easily grab the sickle out of the air and directed it back at Rider.

Rider was trying to move the dust out of his vision so that he could see Yuski. At the last second Rider noticed his own sickle and was cut in half by it.

“What happens now?” Yaooan asked Randiantsi seeing that Rider has now been cut down.

“He’ll return, but with half of his total experience. And considering how high level your friend was, that is going to be a big cut. Haha, get it? Because it’s literal, he was actually cut in half.” Randaintsi responded, snickering at her own joke.

“Well, that sucks.” Yaooan replied. “What were you thinking, Rider?” Yaooan thought to herself. Rider’s body vanished from the Stadium.

The crowd cheered for Yuski as he bowed once again. Yuski looked up at Randiantsi and pointed at her again.

“A perfect victory, nearly as perfect as I am! He would have done better if he sat still.” Yuski said to the crowd.

The quest in Randiantsi’s Menu lit up, and was listed as complete. Yaooan received a fourth of the experience from being present for the quest.

“Looks like we are done here.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan as they both got up from their seats. Yuski thanked his fans and said that he had to go somewhere really quickly. The matches in the Stadium then changed from Ranked to Exhibitions.

“Hey, hold up.” Yuski said, rushing behind Randiantsi. “So what do you think? I’m I not incredible?” Yuski asked Randiantsi with a nervous smile on his face.

“You’re good, but I’m not impressed. I bet me and Vani here could take you on and win.” Randiantsi said, taunting Yuski.

Yuski slumped down. “I can’t fight against someone as cute and tsundere-like as you.” Yuski said, grabbing Randiantsi’s hands.

“How about you join my party? Then we can train together and I wouldn’t have to worry about eliminating you.” Yuski asked Randiantsii.

Randiantsi looked at Yaooan, then back at Yuski. She pulled away her hands. “Nah, I’m good, you’re not really my type anyways.” Randiantsi said, turning towards Yaooan.

“What is your type? Trust me, I can become anything I want to be.” Yuski responded back to Randiantsi.

The crowd then came out of the Stadium after finding out where Yuski was.

“Ahem, I mean. Guess I’ll just see you some other time you two.” Yuski immediately changed his composure in front of the crowd. He then headed back into the stadium.

Yaooan and Randiantsi looked at the crowd and Yuski, until they rounded the corner. Randiantsi pulled out her vehicle. “Come on Vani, let’s ride!” Randiantsi addressed Yaooan. Yaooan got into the vehicle and sat behind Randiantsi.

“Ah, can you please take the front?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Oh, yeah, sure. I hope you are ready because I am a terrible driver.” Yaooan replied switching places with Randiantsi. Yaooan replied switching places with Randiantsi. “Wow, you really got Yuski under your spell, guess he thinks your avatar is super cute.” Yaooan said, as she started the vehicle. It slowly went into the air, since Yaooan can not handle it at high speeds.

“Yeah, that’s weird right?” Randiantsi responded back to Yaooan. “I bet he is super ugly in person.” Randiants said, poking fun at Yuski.

“Eh, I’m not really sure. My appearance took my facial features automatically, so I just assumed everyone else did too.” Yaooan said, still slowly gliding around with Randiantsi grabbing her waist.

“Same here, mine took my appearance too. But I assumed that could be changed. Well, I’m glad that you look like your avatar, because yours is very good looking.” Randiantsi responded back to Yaooan.

Yaooan blushed a bit, not really knowing how to reply. “I’m sure you’re just being nice. I don’t look quite as good in person.”

“You said that before, but I’m not sure I believe you.” Randiantsi quickly responded after Yaooan. Yaooan finally started making the vehicle move forward.

They flew right over the forest and into the valley. Below there were old wood pieces and an assortment of debris laid throughout the ground.

“Oh! Land here, this is my territory!” Randiantsi said, as she pointed down below.

Yaooan then tried to land, but just like before, it took her forever to do so. Randiantsi jumped out of the vehicle and pulled it out of the air once again.

“You know if we keep doing that, we’re going to have to repair it eventually.” Yaooan said emerging from her ball.

“Meh, I’m sure we have enough for any repairs.” Randiantsi said, before spreading her hands wide showing Yaooan the area. “So, what do you think?!” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

Yaooan kicked some rocks that were on the ground. “This place looks like a dump.” Yaooan said, looking around at all the destroyed trees and stones.

“Yeah, it looked better before I started training… but hey.” Randiantsi started saying before sitting atop a boulder. “It’s our dump!” Randiantsi finished, as she pointed around at the area.

“Sure!” Yaooan laughed along with Randiantsi, as she shot a laser from her fingers to carve their names into the stone. “There! Now our names are on it” 

“Oh cool!” Randiantsi hopped down to admire Yaooan’s writing. “You write in Marian Script. So that must mean you at least grew up in Marian, right?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Well, since you called the place Marian, I can assume you don’t live in either of the countries.” Yaooan said walking to Randiantsi. “It’s been the Marian North and South since the Marian Civil War about 10 years ago.”

Randiantsi responded surprised. “Oh! Really? I didn’t know that conflict split the country. Well dang, I guess I should have been paying more attention in school.” Randiantsi then checked the time. “Speaking of school, isn’t it almost time for you to get to your classes?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

Yaooan checked the time. “Yeah it is! Thank you, Randiantsi. I’ll be back later today. I’ll meet back up with you here, right?” Yaooan asked Randiantsi.

“The best place in the world! Vandiantsi… maybe I’ll work on the name a bit more.” Randiantsi responded back to Yaooan.

“Sure! I’ll see you later!” Yaooan said, before logging off. She looked around the room to see Student 1145 still plugged in.

Yaooan thought about leaving him there as pay back, but didn’t have the heart to do so. SO she shook him to get him to notice the time. He disconnected his device shortly after and dropped to his knees.

“I lost 4 days of progress in just one match!” He cried to Yaooan as he went to grab her legs.

“Get off me, and get up! We need to head to class. It was your own fault for challenging him, in a ranked duel no less. What did you think was going to happen?” Yaooan said, lifting him to his feet.

“I thought the power of friendship was going to lead me to victory.” Student 1145 responded to Yaooan.

“You watch too many movies, 1145.” Yaooan said, brushing her legs.

“Anhou.” Student 1145 said, as he got up.

“What?” Yaooan responded.

“My name is Anhou.” Anhou said, gathering his stuff.

“Oh, I’m Student 1076.” Yaooan responded as they both were heading out of Area 9.

“So, I guess we aren’t at the level to use our real names with each other yet?” Anhou asked Yaooan.

“Not quite. But you made a good first step towards that today.” Yaooan said, not to come across as overly mean to Anhou.

A smile appeared on his face. “Did I realy?!” He exclaimed with joy.

“Meh…” Yaooan shrugged. “I mean you’re like the only person I talk to in this whole school, so that counts for something.” Yaooan responded.

“Nice! So how about after school I treat you to a meal?” Anhou asked Yaooan.

“Ah, no. You’re pushing it.” Yaooan said back to him.

“Sorry.” Anhou said before walking silently.

They left Area 9 and had to go in separate directions towards their respective classes.

“See you tomorrow at Home Room period, or in Rutanu, whichever comes first.” Anhou said before heading to class.

Yaooan nodded her head. “Sure.” She then proceeded into hers.

In her Mythology Class, the topic that was being taught was one she enjoyed the most out of all stories. It was about the Fates.

The Fates were said to be 3 Omnipotent beings who guide the motion of all events in the world. One Fate represents Pain, One represents Happiness, and the other represents Success. Yaooan beliefs were in the Fates, and she pleaded with them each day, to ask for favour from Success and Happiness, and gave offerings to Pain so that she would be satisfied with the attention of the day. But the only one so far that interacts with Yaooan has been Pain. Maybe her offerings aren’t enough.

The Fates are said to have emerged once Fathera, the creator of creation, left his position to live among the created. The Fates emerged from the void, and set the laws of the Universe in place. These laws ensured that all beings, including the former Fathera obeyed them.

Over time new Creators emerged from the Created Universe of Father’s Design, and they battled with the Fates for control of Reality. Eventually the Creators lost and were relegated to being the Creators of other Universes, never to have the Power that Fathera had. They no longer had the Power to Create freely, or in the Universes they emerged from.

The Fates can not create anything, but they have dominion over everything that was created.

Yaooan was so fascinated by this. She knew in the back of her head that this just sounds like a myth. A myth that was created to explain why things happen in the world, including the good and the bad. But this cognitive dissonance was not enough to prevent the belief. The Marian North Society primes their citizens towards these beliefs, since they must accept that the Queen is a Physical Representation of the Creator.

Yaooan listened and in no time the class period ended. The rest of her night classes continued as usual.

Yaooan walked home. Anhou wasn’t waiting for her this time. So she continued home alone. She again purchased some snacks from the store on the corner, and walked up the stairs into her home.

She kicked her shoes off and removed her skirt. She then proceeded to lay in her living room to relax and decompress after what felt like a week’s worth of work in only a single day.

Yaooan ate some of her snacks, thinking about eating an actual meal one of these days. “Dang, Randiantsi doesn’t live in Marian North. That sucks. So I may never get to meet her.” Yaooan thought to herself recalling the events of the day.

“Hmm, today was actually pretty fun.” Yaooan laughed at her thoughts as she got up and turned on some videos.

“The Queen issued a holiday for all those who participated in yesterday’s…” The video began to say before Yaooan changed it.

“This Summer looks to be calm for the rest of…” Yaooan changed it from that video too.

“… Tournament to christen the success of the first week of…” Yaooan then prepared to change the video until it said “Rutanu’s Launch.”

“Yeah, I am thoroughly enjoying the interactions of the players from the last 13 days. I had a feeling that this would be a big hit, but never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that we would already have a player base so large. So to celebrate I am going to give each player who signs up before tomorrow an egg that will be hatching into a companion in about a week’s worth of play time. As well as hosting a tournament that will take place in Vesatanis, the Capital City of Vlagora.” The creator of the game said.

“So what kind of prizes are at stake?” The interviewer asked the founder of Rutanu.

“Well obviously, it’s going to be a lot of money. As well as other exclusive features made just for them.” The founder said and then continued. “Trust me, it’s more money than I think a single person would ever need. And I am doing it to decrease my tax bracket now… But that shouldn’t stop anyone from participating. So I’ll see you at the end of this week, Players. Slay the Game!” The video ended and Yaooan jumped up.

“Oh wow! That is such a short notice, I wonder did Randiantsi see this news.” Yaooan said before going into her bag to pull out her device. “Eh, on second thought. I should clean up a bit before logging on.” Yaooan thought looking around at the mess she caused from jumping up too quickly.

Yaooan cleaned up her living room and washed up quickly before immediately logging into Rutanu.

Yaooan checked her messages. “Do you see how many people are online now, this is insane, what is going on?” The message said, from Randiantsi.

“Did you see the video about the tournament 1076?  We could go to Vlagora together for the tournament!” Rider messaged.

“I’m getting flooded by party requests Vani, whenever you log on can you please help me delete them.” The second Randiantsi message read.

“Well looks like the World just got a whole lot more crowded.” Yaooan said before summoning up the vehicle. She then proceeded to head over to their territory. Yaooan looked below and saw that the main hub was crowded, the second new hub was also crowded and that another was being built. “Hordes Field must be a nightmare right now…”

Yaooan landed in the Valley that Randiantsi has massively improved since the last time Yaooan was here.

“Hey Randiantsi, are you around?” Yaooan called out. Randiantsi then jumped down from atop an overlooking mountain, using her needles to swing below.

“Oh thank the Fates it’s you, what took you so long Vani, I’ve been protecting our land from new players for like the past hour. Where did they all come from?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Well the creator of Rutanu just announced a tournament that’s going to be happening in  Vlagora in about a week.  I’m guessing people are taking this chance to try and win some money.” Yaooan responded to Rutanu.

“Dang really? I guess Yuski is going to have a field day cleaning up these new players then.” Randiantsi said jokingly to Yaooan.

“So what do you think?” Yaooan asked.

“About what? The tournament? I’ve never been interested in those things. Where in Vlagora is it supposed to be?” Randiantsi said, picking up some debris.

“Ah, Vesatanis, the Capital City.” Yaooan said remember the location.

“Oh really! Are you going to go to it?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan, seemingly excited now.

“I suppose that I can go with Rider there, but I don’t see why I would if you…” Yaooan was saying before being interrupted by Randiantsi.

“Yes! I’ll be there, I literally live in Vesatanis, so this is a perfect chance for us to hang out in reality.” Randiantsi said, excited about the prospect.

“Oh cool you live in Vesatanis, I heard that technology there is the only one close to comparable to Marian North’s.” Yaooan asked Randiantsi.

Randiantsi facial expression was slightly confused. “Ah, I’m pretty sure Vesatanis has the top technology in the world…” Randiantsi responded.

“Must be Countries trying to make themselves seem like the best I suppose.” Yaooan said also moving some debris.

“Besides, you all still have to go to actual classes, I just get a link and interact with the educator.” Randiantsi replied to Yaooan.

“How does that even work?” Yaooan asked.

“Beats me, well it really doesn’t, but I don’t like talking about school, let’s expand our territory before these New Players start claiming everything.” Randiantsi said, making a fist.

After some time of Randiantsi and Yaooan’s expansion of the Land known as Vandiantsi to extend to more remote territories, a group of new players began to encroach on Yaooan’s and Randiantsi’s domain. This encroachment will be the 5th wave today.

“This is crazy, I would have expected that most people were asleep already.” Yaooan said shooting another player with her finger beam.

“Damn! You’re right! This is going to get a whole lot worse tomorrow during daylight!”. Randiantsi replied, slicing apart a party with her threads.

“We should either build a fortress or gain new party members.” Yaooan said resting a bit after the end of that wave.

“I am 100 Percent down for building a fortress, especially considering these new players just joined for money.” Randiantsi said landing close to Yaooan.

Yaooan looked around and figured that the best thing they could do would be to build a pyramid around their base since anyone can jump over a wall.

“How about I carve out the stones of the surrounding mountains into blocks and you can carry them with your threads into place.” Yaooan recommended.

“Whoa, that’s a lot of weight for me. And that’s a lot of power coming from you, you think you can handle it?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Yeah, as of now I’ve been using a tiny percent of my actual ability, I think it’s about time I crank it up a notch.” Yaooan replied.

“Oh yea, I completely forgot that your ability isn’t lasers, it’s some sort of blast.” Randiantsi said reminded of Yaooan’s skill. “Well go on, let’s see what you can do!”

Yaooan took a stance and cleared her mind. “Okay, destroy the mountains into blocks…” Yaooan chanted in her own head. Then she threw out her hands. But nothing happened.

“Ah… what was that?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Nothing it seems, I guess I did something wrong…” Yaooan then looked at her hands and just casually sent her hand out. Then a giant hole appeared in the mountain.

Randiantsi and Yaooan both looked at the damage and were left speechless. They looked at each other and back at the hole.

“I didn’t even see anything. What did you do!!” Randiantsi said excitedly.

“I just sent my hand out like this and pictured a hole shooting from my hand.” Then another hole appeared in the mountain as Yaooan finished saying that.

Another astonished look appeared on Randiantsi face. “Oh you are very dangerous now!  Maybe you could win the tournament.” Randiantsi said, looking at Yaooan’s hands.

“Okay, let’s scrap the pyramid thing. Let’s claim a cave! Randiantsi said pointing at the cave they were trying to go into the first day they met. “You could just go in there and clear the entire area.”

“Yeah, but then I would also blast off the roof of the cave…” Yaooan responded.

“Oh dang, that is a good point again…” Randiantsi said. “Well I’m all out of ideas. Maybe we should move further inward.”

Yaooan looked around their territory and didn’t just want to abandon it, so she directed her blast at the ground and began shooting.

Randiantsi watched as she was confused by Yaooan’s actions.

Once Yaooan finished there was a 100 meter deep 50 meter wide trench in front of the territory.

“There, now we have a huge hole in the front, flanked by two mountains to our right and left, the only people who can get over that are high level players who would have no interest in our land, and of course people with vehicles.” Yaooan said drinking a restoration drink.

“It’s simple and effective I suppose. Nice idea Vani!” Randiantsi said, looking at her work.  “Now you rest a bit. I am going to look on the map to see if I can hire some NPCs to patrol this area.”

Randiantsi said, opening up her menu. Yaooan kept a look out during Randiantsi’s search.

“Oh check this out Vani, we can hire this NPC for 1RC a day. That’s insanely cheap. We could fill up this entire area with these guys.” Randiantsi said, showing the unit to Yaooan.

“Yeah, I’m sure it would be just free loot for anyone who does happen to get across.” Yaooan said, turning back towards the trench.

“Wow there’s actually a lot we can do.” Randiantsi continued to look. “Oh so this is how Yuski was able to give me a quest.” Randiantsi said aloud towards Yaooan. “He just went through the NPC abilities tab and selected ‘Request a Quest’. Cost Crystals and Experience, but maybe we can do something with that later.” Randiatsi suggested to Yaooan.

“How long are you planning to stay awake tonight Randiantsi?” Yaooan asked.

“I don’t know, until my mom walks in I guess.” Randiantsi said, as she was still looking through her menus. “What about you Vani, how long are you staying awake?”

“Eh, I’ll stay on as long as you are on, I don’t have a bedtime.” Yaooan said laughing to Randiantsi.

“Dang lucky.” Randiantsi responded jokingly..

“Yeah, until you know the reason why I don’t have one…” Yaooan thought to herself.

“So what do you suggest we get? Like, 100 Armoured guards, 100 Stealth Warriors or 100 Calvary Knights.” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“How much is all of that going to cost?” Yaooan replied back.

“Does it matter?” Randiantsi questioned Yaooan.

“Eh, no not really. Get the Stealth Warriors, I want the people who do make it across to think that they are safe, then get ambushed by them.” Yaooan said to Randiantsi.

“Then that is what you will get.” Randiantsi then pressed the option. They both looked around and didn’t see anything.

“Ah, so what happened?” Yaooan asked.

“Hmm, let me press it again.” Randiantsi pressed the option again, and once more, nothing happened.

“Are they taking money away from us each time you press?” Yaooan asked.

“Yes they are. Well that’s not cool at all!” Randiantsi said out loud.

Yaooan went over to Randiantsi to see what was up. “Let me take a look at your menu.” Yaooan said scooting up next to Randiantsi. They both looked around to see if they missed something. Yaooan then noticed a number counting down on the bottom of her page. “Ah, what’s this mean?” Yaooan asked.

“Oh that’s new, I wonder what that means too.” Randiantsi looked at the numbers.

“Pretty sure that’s the March time it takes for them to get to our location.” Yaooan looked at Randiantsi.

“Well guess we have 300 Stealth guys coming in about 40 minutes.” Randiantsi informed Yaooan.

“That may be a bit of overkill wouldn’t you say?” Yaooan asked Randiantsi.

“Then the best thing for us to do is make them cover more territory. Let’s expand Vandiantsi!” Randiantsi said, jumping next to Yaooan.

“Still haven’t come up with a name huh?” Yaooan said in response to Randiantsi proposal.

“Nah, I’m cool with the name, it has equal parts me and you in it.” Randiantsi explained.

“Fine, Vandiantsi it is.” Yaooan responded.

Yaooan and Randiantsi set out into the wider wilderness behind Vandiantsi. They trusted that the guards who would show up would protect the area they were assigned once they arrived. Yaooan and Randiantsi laughed as they hopped on stones trying to see which would give the most commanding appearance. In the short amount of time of exploration,  they have doubled the amount of land that they had previously explored in the past few days.

“The beasts this far out are not as tough as I figured they would have been.” Randiantsi said after cutting down a Cereph.

“Yea, it must be from the excessive amount of experience we gain from defending our lands, and not to mention that day with the fish.” Yaooan said, picking up its remains.

“Yeah, do you think Rutanu has Raids?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“What is a Raid?” Yaooan responded.

“You know, it’s in a game where the bosses become so difficult they recommend you having a team to attack them. And these bosses usually drop like crazy rare items.” Randiantsi informed Yaooan.

“Hmm, earlier when I was going to meet you at the Stadium, I flew extremely high in the air and saw a dark fiery mountain in the distance. Maybe that’s where the raid is.” Yaooan told Randiantsi.

“Oh, we should check it out.” Randiantsi said, bringing out their vehicle. “No reason to keep cutting down small fries, let’s go after the big boss!” She said, presenting Yaooan her seat. “Can you please drive?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan.

“Yeah, sure.” Yaooan then got in front of Randiantsi and took off into the air towards the area with the fire mountain.

“Wow, that place looks frightening!” Randiantsi said, looking at the black and red clouds surrounding the mountain.

“So does this fit the description of what you would call a Raid?” Yaooan asked, approaching the mountain.

“Whatever it is… it has an immense amount of Energy coming from it.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan, as they began to circle down towards it.

Yaooan: Tale of Fate – Chapter One

Yaooan, a student of the Central Capital City School for Ren Shaole, wakes up in a terror. She had the same recurring dream of the Marian Civil War which happened a few years ago that resulted in the loss of her parents.

However, this was not unusual for Children who lived in the Community which Yaooan called Home. The Community was built recently to house the Ren Shaole population after the end of the War. Students living in the area all go to the same school which separates the Community from Ren Zuiperi Residences. The Community suffers from inadequate assistance from the Marian North Monarchy, therefore the area is nearly it’s own microcosm of Government Instability and infighting. 

Yaooan get’s up to prepare for her classes. She lives in one of the fancier apartments because she was the benefactor of a Cruel Test a couple of Years ago, the event still scars her mind, but the money was enough to keep those scars from coming back to the surface. She looked back at her home before stepping out the door to the noisy outdoors.

“Okay, time to drag myself through today.” Yaooan thought to herself, as she put on a smile and made her way down the road.

Along the way she saw a tiny trinket on the ground. It reminded Yaooan of the trinkets her mom wore so long ago. Yaooan picked it up and gave it a light dusting. It was a metallic item with 5 petals surrounding a circular bulb. After giving it a good look, Yaooan placed it in her tall green wild green hair.

“I love this!” Yaooan thought to herself. She continued down the street.

A group of girls, who took the same route as Yaooan were also making their way to classes. Their names were Paiyi, Leanna, Zouyi, and Yauyue. The tallest one, named Yauyue, looked over. “Hey Yaooan! You’re looking exceptionally cute today!” Yaooan stopped and looked over at the group of 4 girls. 

“Oh really… thanks… I actually -” Yaooan began saying before she was interrupted by Yauyue.

“Just kidding! I can’t believe you actually believed me!” Yauyue said jokingly, and the rest of her friends laughed along with her. The other’s added jokes poking fun at the smile Yaooan had when she thought she actually received a genuine compliment. They continued until they felt that Yaooan was adequately put down.

They walked away and continued to school.

Yaooan stayed where she was. She took the trinket out of her hair, and looked down at it. Her smile was no longer present. Yaooan loosened her grip of the trinket preparing to let it fall to the ground. However, as her grip was beginning to falter she grasped it once again, and placed it back into her hair.

“I don’t care what they think, I like it.” Yaooan thought to herself. Her smile returned to her face. Yaooan’s mother taught her that the way you feel about something is determined by you, and not by what others say about it. Thus Yaooan continued on, with the adorable smile that lights up even the darkest souls.

The Central Capital City School for Ren Shaole was surrounded by a large gate which was about 3 meters tall. The pillars were made of a light brown stone and between them were dark brown bars. At the Gate was a Ren Zuiperi Guard. He made sure that only Students and Authorized Workers got into the school premises.

He stopped Yaooan.

“Student 1076, what do you think you are doing?” The Gate Guard asked Yaooan.

“What do you mean Sir?” Yaooan responded, eagerly trying to get to class.

The Gate Guard forcibly grabbed the trinket and tore it out of Yaooan’s hair. He crumpled it into pieces. He kept it in his balled up fist.

“There, now hurry and get to class! Stop trying to bring crap into this school.” The Gate Guard said to Yaooan.

“Sorry Sir, I thought it was permissible.” Yaooan responded.

“Well you were wrong, now get going!” The Gate Guard yelled at Yaooan. She hopped up and moved quickly into the School Yard.

In the School Yard there were many different cliches of students all talking to one another before the first period began. Yaooan wanted so badly to interact with the other students, but never could get the confidence to do so. She feared that they would try to make her prove herself to them, and that pressure was something Yaooan did not want to get involved with.

“One day…” Yaooan thought to herself. She turned away from the groups and went towards the Zone 2 Doors. It was yet another morning of not having the confidence to speak to others, and another morning of others not wanting to speak to her. She remained alone.

Yaooan sat in her first bell class. She was half paying attention as her teacher gave a lesson. Yaooan stared out the window yearning for adventure. Then her teacher samed her teaching stick against the front podium.

“Student 1076!” The Home Room Teacher called out. Yaooan snapped out of daydreaming and stood up in attention, as the Ren Shaole students had to do when being spoken to by their Teachers.

“Yes Teare Ro!?” Yaooan responded, startled, and shaken up.

“If you long to be outside so much, pick up your materials and stand outside until the end of the period.” Teare Ro said to Yaooan. She pointed at the exit, and Yaooan picked up her stuff and left the classroom. She sat down in the hallway.

“Dang, not again. Now I have nothing to look at but this wall…” Yaooan thought to herself as she stared at the wall moving her fingers along the cracks.

“Psshh…” A voice down the hall called out.

Yaooan looked around for the sound.

“Psshh, over here. To your left.” The voice continued.

Yaooan looked over and saw a boy, who seemed to have also been kicked out of class. He waved his hands trying to get Yaooan’s attention.

Yaooan looked over at him in surprise. “Don’t you know you can get in more trouble if you talk while kicked out of class?” Yaooan educated him.

“Oh really… then I guess I should be quiet then.” The boy said as he closed his mouth with his hands.

Yaooan smiled. This kid obviously was new to the ‘being kicked out of class’ club. “Hey, so why’d you get kicked out of class? Seems like your first time, right?” Yaooan address him.

“Yea, it is my first time out here. Koloco Ro caught me playing Rutanu in class. He took my device and kicked me out of class.” He responded.

Yaooan was confused. “What’s Rutanu?” Yaooan asked as she got in a more comfortable position. She laid on her stomach in the direction of the boy.

“It’s this awesome game that was just released! You play in this virtual world created by some guy from Vlagora. In it you collect small items, travel to different biomes. You can even battle other players in PvP at the Stadium. I’ve been addicted to it since it came out like 10 days ago!” He said to Yaooan with clear excitement in his voice.

“A virtual world?” Yaooan said to herself as she looked up at the ceiling. “Sounds a whole lot better than this real one.” Yaooan said with a melancholic tone.

“It sure is! The real world sucks! You should play Rutanu later! And when you do you can add me, my name is Waymen Knight Rider and-” The boy was interrupted by the Walking Patrol.

“Talking outside of class? You must think being kicked outside is a reward. Collect your things and come with me.” The Patrol commanded the boy.

He grabbed the boy by his arm and dragged him up.

“I’m Student 1145, find me during the middle break period, okay?!” He said to Yaooan. The boy was then fully escorted out of the hall.

Yaooan looked up at the ceiling once more, getting off of her stomach. “Rutanu? A Virtual World, I wonder what that’s like…” Yaooan thought to herself.

The day’s classes went on as usual after that. Royal Etiquette was the first Period, Anthropology was the second period, followed by Natural Mathematics, and Historical Recreation. After Historical Recreation she was given a Middle Period Break. Which separated the day classes from the Night Classes.

Yaooan’s Night classes were Mythology and Legends, followed by Home Economics, Physical and Health Services, then Social Conditioning as her final class.

Immediately after Historical Recreation ended Yaooan eagerly left the Zone 2 Building. She brought out her Communication Device and placed it on her neck so that she could try out the game that Student 1145 told her about earlier.

“Allow access to Cerebral Process?” Her device asked her as she was downloading the game.

“Oh, I guess it is Virtual Reality… so sure why not.” Yaooan accepted. 

The opening of the game begins to play. 

“Yea, I’m going to skip that.” Yaooan skipped through. 

“Make sure the area around you is clear, and safe.” The game showed an unskippable scene.

Yaooan looked around and felt that standing in the middle of the court yard before night classes was probably not the best place to start playing a virtual game.

“Okay, I’m going to head into the cafeteria then.” Yaooan thought and picked up her stuff. She headed inside while configuring her information.

“What was the boy’s name again… waymen something…” Yaooan said, knocking on her head. “Ah Knight Rider. Waymen Knight Rider.”

Yaooan added his name and he immediately sent a message. “Where are you?” He messaged Yaooan.

“I’m in the cafeteria.” Yaooan wrote back.

“Come to The Music Rooms in Zone 12, there’s a group of us all playing here.” He replied back.

“Cool, I’ll be there.” Yaooan replied. She then got up from her seat and began heading to the Music Rooms.

Yahoo was stopped once again by a School Guard.

“Hey take that out of your head while walking, I’m tired of you kids walking into walls with those devices connected to your heads.” The Guard said to Yaooan as she was making her way to the Music rooms.

“I’m sorry, I’ll do that right away Sir.” Yaooan responded. She removed the device from the back of her neck and held it in her hand.

Yaooan stood in attention as the Guard began to walk. “Freaking kinds, they got it way too easy nowadays.” The Guard said to himself as he walked away from Yaooan.

Yaooan looked at him annoyed. He obviously viewed any progress forward as a negative contribution to Society. People like him are what caused the Civil War to occur. Yaooan continued to make her way to the Music Rooms.

When Yaooan got there she saw a bunch of Students sitting down, they were all plugged in, and knee deep into gaming.

“Hey Vani!” The Boy who was in the Hall with Yaooan earlier called out to her.

“Wow, already calling me by my Username?” Yaooan responded as she walked over to him.

“Yea, but that’s because I don’t know your real name, so that’s the next best thing.” He said as Yaooan took a seat next to him. “Come on quick. Yuski is about to compete in a 3 v 1!” The boy said to Yaooan.

Yaooan took her device out of her pocket and attached it to the back of her head. She set the game up. She stretched out her fingers, and the walking within the game felt as natural as if she was the Character itself.

The device connected to the motor functions of the brain which pulled the signals that would otherwise be sent into the muscles, to the device itself.

Knight Rider was eagerly trying to get Yaooan, who was Vani currently, to hurry up and follow him in the Virtual World.

“What’s a 3 v 1? How’s this game actually played?” Yaooan asked.

“Come on, just watch!” Knight Rider responded by rushing to the Stadium. Yaooan followed behind him. The Stadium NPC took one Beginners Stadium Entrance Token from Yaooan and allowed her to enter.

Knight Rider led Yaooan into a Giant Colosseum. The stands were filled with other players. They cheered loudly towards the center. The players in the stands all had unique gears and appearances. All seemed excited and happy to be there.

Yaooan felt this aura and began to get excited as well.

In the center of the Stadium were 4 players. 3 of them surrounded one lone competitor.

“The one in the middle, his name is Yuski.” Knight Rider said to Yaooan.

The 3 Competitors rushed in to attack Yuski.

Player 1 launched a Fire Blast at Yuski who then twisted around and sent it at Player 2. Player 3 rushed from behind and tried to attack Yuski with a sword as Yuski easily dodges. Player 1 continued to launch fire shots at Yuski. The double attack was easily handled as Player 2 came in with a spear and attacked Yuski. 

“Easiest thing I’ve ever done.” Yuski said as he toyed with the other players.

“So why are they fighting against him? What’s happening here?” Yaooan asked Knight Rider.

“Yuski is an extremely good player. Ever since the game came out he has been dominating.” Knight Rider began to say as he then brought up the stats on Yuski. “He has a 140.2.2 record. He allows anyone to challenge him, especially during these hours. Afterwards, he goes into the Raid Areas and Solos them, or trains players with high potential.

Yuski grabbed the spear of Player 2 and spits a Liquid on that Spear. He used it to then catch the flame from the attack of Player 1. He used the now flame engulfed Spear to set Player 3 on fire. In the chaos, Yuski kicks the sword that Player 3 wasa holding into the chest of Player 1, eliminating him. As Player 2 realized that Player 1 was slain, Yuski rushed him and shoved the Spear through both Player 2 and 3. Then he finished them up by igniting the weapon, eliminating the two, ending the match.

“Damn, he is good.” Yaooan was impressed with the performance.

“So what do you think? Feel like you have a chance against him?” Knight Rider asked Yaooan jokingly.

“Maybe after I learn how to actually play, maybe I will give it a try.” Yaooan responded.

“Oh yeah! I forgot, this is your first time. Then I guess I will show you around real quick.” Knight Rider said as he got up from his seat and went to exit the stadium.

Yaooan followed behind him.

As she walked through the halls she was able to feel the dust from the battles brush against her skin. She noticed the smell of smoke and the sensation of taste.

They both exited the Stadium and were now in the main hub.

“So first, you’ll have to go to that Hub Center over there. In the front there should be an NPC that’ll tell you how to gain access to your Weapons Bag and World Areas.” Knight Rider said to Yaooan. He pointed towards a tower that was surrounded by what looked like 2 dozen people.

“What are you going to be doing while I’m interacting with the NPC? Yaooan asked Knight Rider.

“It’s going to take you a bit of time, so I am going to grind up some extra materials. I don’t want to embarrass myself with my complete lack of items if we go exploring.” Knight Rider said to Yaooan.

“I would much prefer if you stayed here though. I don’t really mind if you don’t have items.” Yaooan said to Knight Rider.

“It’s no problem, it’ll be better this way anyways.” Knight Rider said to Yaooan before he summoned a vehicle and drove away on it.

Yaooan watched as Knight Rider left her alone there. But she was impressed by the Vehicle. “Well that’s cool.”

Yaooan walked towards the center of the mass of people. They were all speaking to one another as they were interacting with the NPC. Yaooan started to feel alone as this situation reminded her of being at school. She lowered her head, and made herself seem small.

As Yaooan was making her way towards the NPC she felt someone touch her shoulder.

“Hey!” A voice of the person whom the hand belonged to called out towards Yaooan.

Yaooan turned around to look at this person. She pointed at herself. “Did you mean to try and get my attention?” Yaooan asked the person. This person was shorter than Yaooan and had short dark hair.

“Obviously, that’s why I tapped your shoulder. Why are you looking so down huh? Not feeling well today?” The Short Girl asked Yaooan.

“No, it’s not that… it’s just how I get when I see a bunch of people.” Yaooan responded.

“Oh! So you are shy?!” The Short Girl quickly responded looking up at Yaooan with an interested smile.

“No, I wouldn’t say shy, it’s just…” Yaooan stopped herself. She thought for a little time and realized that she didn’t need to tell this person that she was from the Capital District. She didn’t have to say anything that was real. This was her chance to reinvent herself. So Yaooan dropped her nervous hands and relaxed her shoulders. She lifted her head up and stood tall.

“Yeah, I wouldn’t say I am shy at all.” Yaooan responded. Yaooan pointed her thumb at herself. “Hi, my name is Vani!” Yaooan said to the Short Girl with her charming smile.

“Wow, what a complete Rotation of Pi!” The Girl gestured as she then bowed to Yaooan. “And I’m Randiantsi.

Yaooan smiled. “So, Randiantsi, are you also new to this world?” Yaooan asked her.

“Well technically everyone is basically new, this world has only existed for like a week. So it’s prime time to start forming groups and setting claims to territory!” Randiantsi said to Yaooan with wide gestures.

“So you were trying to recruit me into your group?” Yaooan asked.

“Yeah, I’ve been going around but most people seem to only join groups that have their friends in them already. So when I saw you alone, I figured that I should recruit you. That way we both won’t be alone!” Randiantsi responded to Yaooan with an adorable smile.

Yaooan figured that no one would actually reach out to talk to a lonely person in a crowd of people. Randiantsi must just be a different breed of person.

“Okay, I’ll join your party, group thing.” Yaooan nodded her head to Randiantsi.

“Awesome! Well then I’ll help you speed through this tutorial stage and we can get some real work done!” Randiantsi grabbed Yaooan’s hand and they both pushed through to the NPC.

“Hey Big Guy! She is a member of my Party now, so allow me to share my equipment with her.” Randiantsi commanded the NPC.

“You got it Warrior!” The NPC said as Vani and Randiantsi now had an annotation next to their names, as well as a party inventory. The party inventory was filled with starting gadgets such as an axe, and bags.

“Whoa, that’s pretty cool too!” Yaooan said looking at all the stuff.

“Yeah it is! Now I’m going to sign you up for the Tutorial Stages. Don’t worry, it just involves a bunch of fetch quests and monster killings.” Randiantsi said to Yaoan before Yaooan received a quest note.

“Now we can leave this area as the rest of these peeps stumble their way into the first mission.” Randiantsi said before she grabbed Yaooan’s hand again and ran towards the Hordes Field.

Yaooan looked at the quest. “I need some Meat from a Sereph, found in Hordes Field. A Julo herb found in Hector’s Forest, and a Mortar and Pesto. Please, my child is sick and on his last leg.” Yaooan read aloud what was written in the quest.

“Well looks like three ingredients is all we need to find for this quest to be complete.” Yaooan said as she was still being guided by Randiantsi.

“Yeah, well actually it’s more like five items. Since we have to create our mortar and pesto from stones also found in the Hordes Field. And we use a stonecutter to form it into its shape.” Randiantsi said as they arrived in the field.

“Wow, you really do know what you are doing.” Yaooan responded to Randiantsi.

The field was circular, and was surrounded by a dense forest on its three sides. It was filled with flying creatures that were saucer shaped with a spherical center of light blue. There were players in the field chasing these creatures.

“Go on and destroy one of those creatures, they drop the meat that you need.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan pointing at the Saucer Creature.

“And how do I do that?” Yaooan asked, looking around for a weapon.

“Wait?! You’re telling me you don’t have a weapon?” Randiantis said with surprise at this revelation. “Wow, even I came with a Shield and these needles.” Randiantsi said, showing Yaooan the items. “Looks like we are a pretty pathetic party already…” Randiantsi said, looking at the other Player, running around shooting fireballs with magic staffs and slicing the Serephs with their weapons.

Yaooan sat down next to Randiantsi. “Maybe it’s some sort of glitch. I can restart and we can form a party again.” Yaooan said to Randiantsi.

“Nah, it’s all good. Guess you can punch them, and I can attach these needles into my shield like this.” Randiantsi said, trying to look on the bright side. She showed Yaooan her creation.

“Well this does suck, everyone else seems to be running around with weapons. “Yaooan said softly looking through her empty weapon’s inventory.

“Rutanu is connected to your Cerebral Cortex, so is there some sort of weapon you’d imagine you would be good at or something?” Randiantsi asked Yaooan as she stood back up.

“I always imagined that I would be like those gods I met when I was younger. They were able to manipulate the Earth with cool hand gestures.” Yaooan said as she demonstrated what they were doing and a huge clast shot out from her hand. The blast obliterated the ground about 40 meters away.

Randiantsi and Yaooan looked out at the damage and were stunned.

Randiantsi turned back towards Yaooan. “Have you actually seen people do that in reality? Like the Real World?! That is beyond amazing!” Randiantsi said, as she looked at Yaooan’s hands.

Vani’s stats took a sharp decrease. “I have no clue how I did that, but it took a crap ton of energy from me.” Yaooan said to Randiantsi.

“Yeah, guess you’re not used to it yet. Well, can you run around with me and we will get this quest done the hard way. Afterwards we both can go and learn to use our skills!” Randiantsi gave Yaooan a cheerful smile. “Though I am super jealous of yours already.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan, as she then went out and tried to hit the Serephs with her shield.

Yaooan ran out behind Randiantsi and tried to hold down the Sereph, while Randiantsi hit it repeatedly, causing blunt force with the shield.

The Sereph was resisting, as Randiantsi and Yaooan continued to wrestle it.

“This bad boy is tough!” Randiantsi said, trying to break through its shell.

“Hey, can I have a look at your needles again? Do you have anything else in your bag?” Yaooan asked Randiantsi as the creature was slowly breaking out of Yaooan’s hold.

“I have some items from the next 3 quests, and a string that I came with. Other than that, I don’t have anything. My previous… “ Randiantsi started saying before stopping.

Yaooan thought for a second. “You have strings? I think that’s supposed to go with your needles.” Yaooan said to Randiantsi.

“Well that makes sense, I am actually pretty good at puppetterring.” Randiantsi said, as she combined her needle and the string together. The combination formed a new default weapon called threaded threads. Randiantsi then took this new item and combined it with her shield. Her Weapon then became Protected Puppet Master.

Randiantsi then brought out this weapon set up and located a different Sereph. She threw 3 needles out and it penetrated through it’s skin. She then pulled her hands apart and it separated the Seraph into two pieces.

Yaooan clapped. “Talk about overpowered!” Yaooan congratulated Randiantsi.

“Seems that way huh.” Randiantsi smiled. “I feel like a whole new warrior! And to imagine that I was running around before, just smacking things with my shield.” Randiantsi then brought back her needles.

Yaooan ran to the body and picked up the scraps. She placed the meat in her inventory.

“Let’s hurry and get to the Forest! Your blast from earlier threw a bunch of stones into the air earlier, so we can quickly grab those too.” Randiantsi said as she ran to the stones.

Yaooan received a message from Knight Rider. “Hey, where are you Vani? Did you already get your quest from the NPC?” Knight Rider wrote.

“Yea! I’m almost done with it, where are you?” Yaooan responded.

“I’m not too far, I’m going to meet up with you soon. I found a bunch of guys who are willing to train with us later. What’s your weapon like?” Rider responded.

“Cool, I’m also with a person. And I didn’t get a weapon, so I’m not sure what my weapon is, I think it might be magic.” Yaooan responded picking up the stones with Randiantsi.

“Magic? Then you would have gotten a staff. Well I’ll be there soon. Later!” Knight Rider responded before closing the chat.

Randiantsi questioned Yaooan. “Oh, did you already have a party?” She asked with a saddened expression.

“No, I don’t have a party. He is a person from my school who introduced me to the game.” Yaooan responded to Randiantsi.

“Oh, you’re school aged in reality. That’s funny.” Randiantsi said laughing. “I figured that you were older than me, but now I know you are barely older, only by a tiny bit.” Randiantsi responded.

“Dang, I meant to keep all information about myself a secret… oh well. I guess that’s not super important, as long as she doesn’t know my breed or location, then it should be okay.” Yaooan thought to herself.

“Don’t worry, I can tell that you feel wronged by me knowing that information. So any information you share with me, I will share the same amount with you. It’ll be mutual destruction.” Randiantsi smiled towards Yaooan.

Yaooan smiled back and they both headed into the forest.

While Randiantsi and Yaooan walked deeper into the Forest the surroundings became darker and darker.

“Don’t worry about that, it’s just the canopy above. It’s not so ominous once you get used to it.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan, reassuring her that everything would be okay. Randiantsi handed Yaooan a drink. “Here, this is to replenish your energy. I was saving it since before when I was running around with my shield I was getting exhausted nearly immediately, but now that I don’t have to even move to use my skills, I think you should have it.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan.

Yaooan drank it, and her stats returned to their original positions. “Wow, thanks, that really got me back into shape.” Yaooan said as Randaintsi spotted the plant.

“There it goes, now we can just grab it and go back to the NPC in the Center Hub.” Randiantsi went to grab it. Someone then came and stepped down on her hand stopping her from grabbing it.

“Get off me! That hurts!” Randiantsi said, as she was trying to pull her hand out from underneath.

“Look what we have here, some new players walking around in our territory.” A tall well armoured player said with two others behind him.

Yaooan adn Randiantsi have now encountered their first griefers. They don’t seem to care about having an enjoyable gaming experience, what they were after was the satisfaction of dominance.

“Hey, if this is your territory, we will just leave. We don’t need this herb from here anyways.” Randiantsi said as she tried to get her hand from under the guy’s foot.

“Where do you expect to find one then? This entire forest is our territory.” He said, as he continued to crush Randiantsi’s hand under his foot.

“You can’t claim an area like that! This is where new players complete their first quest.” Yaooan yelled at the guys.

“I don’t think you are in any position to talk, you are at an even lower level than her. And it’s three versus two. You stand absolutely no chance.” The guy told Yaooan.

Yaooan’s hand then began to brighten with heat. Her anger began to grow. She knew that she probably wouldn’t win, but she needed to at least try.

As Yaooan prepared to attack the griefer was smacked across the face by a staff and flew into a tree. His party members were also taken out by these new arrivals.

Knight Rider had arrived with his other training mates.

“Looks like you guys encountered some griefers.” Knight Rider said as he helped Randiantsi to her feet.

“Seems like it’s seven versys three now! I think you guys should get going!” Yaooan yelled out at the main griefer.

“Don’t let us see you two alone, because when that happens, it’s over!” The griefer yelled as they ran off.

Randiantsi shook her arm from Knight Rider’s hand. “Thanks, but I’m pretty sure we had that handled.” Randiantsi said walking to Yaooan.

“Well, isn’t it a small world Randiantsi.” A member of the training team that Knight Rider brought said to Randiantsi. “Who would have thought that following this guy would lead us back to you…” The Team Member looked around. “Though since this is a level one area, I can’t say that I am surprised.” He laughed.

“You know these people?” Yaooan asked Randiantsi.

“Yeah! I was originally their party member, until the third quest, when they threw me away!” Randiantsi said, directed towards the group.

“We didn’t even think you would have returned to the game. Considering how weak your weapon is and all.” The training team member then addressed Knight Rider. “I wouldn’t recommend you teaming up with her, all she is going to do is slow you down.” The Team Member said to Knight Rider.

“Stop telling people that! I have a new weapon now, and I’m sure it’s way better than what you have now!” Randiantsi said to her former party members.

“I’ll believe it when I see it, and what about you newbie? You must have had pity on her to bring her along this far.” The Former member said to Yaooan.

“Why are you guys so mean!” Yaooan yelled out at the group.

“This is a game, you either try to  be the best or stop playing. If you are looking for pity or something casual, then play a farming simulator.” The former member said to Yaooan. “Now, what is your weapon?” He asked Yaooan.

“I don’t know…” Yaooan responded.

“So, Knight Rider, you brought us all the way back to the Level One area to train up a Casual and someone who doesn’t have a weapon? Man, we thought you were cool.” The former party member said

Knight Rider looked at Yaooan, and back at the former member. “Wait XVRaider! I really didn’t know! Honest! Besides, we don’t even know the other girl, I just know Vani. So it’s cool if we just train her up, right?” Knight Rider asked XVRaider.

“Yeah, sure, whatever. If she will become a valuable asset then we can train her up.” XVRaider responded.

“You hear that Vani? Let’s go and get those levels!” Knight Rider said to Yaooan with excitement.

Randiantsi then looked at Yaooan, then Yaooan looked at Knight Rider.

“Nah, I think I’ll stick with Randiantsi. I’ll grind my way up slowly.” Yaooan responded to Knight Rider.

“Damn, you guys are stupid. Come on, let’s go. I’m not trying to stay around this sappy area. If you want to come along Rider then you better start. Because we will get rid of you in a heartbeat.” XVRaider said as the rest of the group got on their vehicles and started driving away.

“Well, I’ll talk to you later Vani, I can’t waste this chance. I’ll catch you in the real world.” Knight Rider said as he jumped on his vehicle and followed the group.

Randiantsi walked up behind Yaooan and grabbed Vani’s hand. “Thank you for staying, I thought for sure you were just going to go with them, then I was going to be alone again.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan.

“No way, I know how it feels to be alone. I would not wish that on anyone.” Yaooan said as she went to pick up the herb. “I hope this is still okay enough to give to the NPC.” Yaooan smiled and jokingly said to Randiantsi.

“Don’t see why not.” Randiantsi responded. They both then got up and ran towards the hub area.

After crossing back across the field they arrived at the hub. It had significantly less people now.

“Here you are, my good sir.” Randiantsi said, handing in the items.

“Well the Mortar and Pesto are amazing quality, so I’m going to ignore the garbage you gave me as an herb. So here’s your reward.” The NPC gave Yaooan an Energy drink. “Stop by here if you are ready for your next quest.”

Yaooan looked around at the near empty area.

“Hey, where is everyone?” Yaooan asked the NPC.

“Current time is 1540.00, these are low hours.” The NPC responded.

“Oh crap! Really! I’m late for class!” Yaooan said to Randiantsi. “I’ll talk to you when I get back on. I need to go now!” Yaooan said in a rush.

“Okay, talk to you later Vani!” Randiantsi said as Yaooan logged off.

There was no one in this Music Room. The other rooms were already in full class session playing music. Yaooan proceeded to exit and tried to sneak across the cafeteria, trying to make her way through the Student Halls.

“What are you doing roaming around the halls? Show me your pass.” The Hall Guard said to Yaooan.

“Ah, well, you see… I don’t have one.” Yaooan admitted as she looked down at her feet.

“Then I’ll escort you to the office and you can get a pass from there, along with a detention.” The guard told Yaooan as she was then escorted to the administration building.

“So what were you doing Student 1076, doesn’t seem that you have any disciplinary marks on your record, guessing you may have slept and let time slip by.” The Vice Dean of the school said to Yaooan. 

“Oh, yea, it was something like that Sir…” Yaooan responded to him.

“Considering this is your first infringement on the rules of the school, I will be giving you detention for half the typical detention period, following which you are to promptly return to Class. Is that clear.” He addressed Yaooan.

“Yes Sir, you are very merciful Sir.” She responded.

“Now don’t let me see you in here again unless you are being rewarded, here’s your pass and get to class.” He said to Yaooan as he gave her a note.

She left quickly without looking back. And headed directly to her class. Part of the way to her class room a guard began approaching her. She then hid behind her pass that she held in front of her face.

“Dang, these guys are just eager to get Students in trouble.” Yaooan thought to herself entering her Mythology class. Yaooan sat down in the back and thought about the game she just got done playing. She looked at her real life hand and had a joyful thought of what she would do if she was actually able to shoot fire from her hands.

The Mythologies class were going over the tales of the Legendary Island of Qyran. A place that was said to exist in the Far East, on the other side of the World. It is said to be home to Giants who tried to venture into the mainland but were defeated by Turoklan the Ren Zuiperi Demigod who later destroyed the island and the giants.

Yaooan heard this story a billion times by now. She had her eyes on the board but in reality she was not in the room but in her own head daydreaming. Then classes continued on like that until alas the school day ended and she could head home.

Student 1145 was waiting at the gate hoping that he would see Yaooan walking out of the school towards the community. Yaooan saw him and quickened her pace so she could scold him.

“Why on Earth did you just leave me sitting in the Music Room!?” Yaooan said to him angrily.

“I didn’t know what to do, you seemed like such a pro at getting in trouble earlier, so I thought that you had a plan up your sleeve to avoid getting in trouble if you were late.” Student 1145 responded to Yaooan nervously.

“If I was a pro at getting in trouble, then I would not be getting caught.” Yaooan said to him as she then continued to walk home.

“Oh, that’s a good point. I should have thought about it a bit longer.” Student 1145 said as he followed behind Yaooan hesitantly. “So, what did you think of the game? Cool right?” He asked Yaooan.

“Yeah, it’s fun, but I did not appreciate you leaving me and Randiantsi behind earlier, that was very uncool of you.” Yaooan said stopping and pointing at Student 1145.

“I’ve been playing for like a week, and those guys were like bosses, when they offered to teach me the ropes I couldn’t say no, especially since I’ve just met you.” Student 1145 said before Yaooan lifted her finger with a bit more anger.

Well if you barely know me is a good enough reason to leave me whenever something seems advantageous, then I don’t really need people like you in game or in real life.” Yaooan said to Student 1145 turning back around away from him and quickening her pace.

“Wait, that’s not what I meant!” Student 1145 said, attempting to follow behind her.

“Don’t follow me!” Yaooan yelled back at him, she continued to walk home without looking back at him.

“Oh… okay…” Student 1145 said, as he turned around to see if Yaooan would ever look back.

Yaooan picked up a drink from her corner market, and a bag of finger snacks. She headed up into her room. Yaooan threw off her shoes and watched videos in her living room.

The videos were about another explosion in Marian South. It focused on how the citizens of Marian South were distrustful of their Democratic Government. The talking heads were speculating on a soon overthrow of the country, and their desire to return to being under the Leadership of the Royal Family and the Queen of Marian North.

Yaooan turned off the video. She never enjoyed news like that. It seems like the war never ends. That video brought back terrible memories, she then proceeded to throw her snacks into the fridge with her other half eaten bags, and got up to wash her body.

“I wish this world would stop being so selfish.” Yaooan thought to herself as she angrily looked in the mirror. “Damn, I hate reality so much. I feel so powerless!” Yaooan spit out her teeth cleaning liquid and continued into her shower where she then cried.

After her shower she felt a bit better and laid in her bed where she put on her device and began to play Rutanu. “I need to get away, just for a little bit, better than my dreams.” Yaooan thought to herself as she logged in.

Yaooan saw that Rider had filled her messages with apologies and gifts. “I only care about your actions, I don’t need gifts.” Yaooan said reading the messages and storing the gifts in a case.

“I’m back on Randiantsi if you are on.” Yaooan messahed. Randiantsi then immediately responded.

“Wow, were you not able to sleep? I’ll be on shortly, I just have to make sure my mom doesn’t hear me playing.” Randiantsi responded with excited annotations.

“Cool!” Yaooan replied. Though the word ‘Mom’ really made Yaooan feel a certain way. Yaooan went to the Fields and just wanted to release some steam on some Serephs. She knew that opening her hand would release a giant burst so how about if she just pointed with one finger. 

Doing this caused a laser like beam to shoot from her hand slicing where she aimed. “Well that’s cool. I think I can control that.” Yaooan thought to herself as she continued to try and make it more precise.

Randiantsi came up behind Yaooan to surprise her. Yaooan was startled and shot a laser beam at Randiantsi. But she had her Shield up, so her Shield took the damage.

“Cool looks like you got some control of your skill!” Randiantsi then gave Yaooan some items. “I cleared the Second and Third quest for you, let’s turn these in and get to the real battles.” Randiantsi said showing joy to Yaooan.

“Yea, sure, I’m dying to get into some real battles.” Yaooan said heading to the NPC. “Here you are, all the items you need for the second quest.” Yaooan handed over the items.

“You are indeed correct, you have gotten everything. So here is your third quest.” The NPC said to Yaooan. 

“Well looks like you are done with this one, now here is a map since I trust that you can take care of yourself. If you ever are lost, come back here and I’ll give you a hint. See you soon!” The NPC then went back into his hut.

“Nice, so I saw this cool cave just to the east, we really need to go in there. I think it might have some cool loot!” Randiantsi said to Yaooan.

“Oh that reminds me, her is some cool loot for you.” Yaooan handed the case of Items that Knight Rider gave her. 

“Oh wow, where did you get these from, some of these are epic rarity.” Randiantsi looked at the clothing.

“I got it from that guy from earlier today, you know Knight Rider, the one that left us to hang out with XRaider or whatever his name was.” Yaooan said looking at her map.

“Oh does he have a crush on you or something?” Randiantsi said as she was looking through the items.

“I don’t know and I don’t care. He can’t win me over with some gifts.” Yaooan said still looking at the map.

Randiantsi then drank some of the EXP boost drink in the case. “I wish I received gifts, that would be so cool.” Randiantsi said to Yaooan, joking with her.

“You did receive a gift, I gave these to you haha.” Yaooan responded no longer looking at the map.

“Psshh you know what I mean.” Randiantsi said closing the case. They both laughed as they prepared for their next journey into the caves.

Angel Misery 2: Chapter Four

Truth comes to Light:

The day after Maria, Silvia and Rebecca went to the Dean’s office to discuss the procedure they must handle as witnesses, the trial for Ventus’ Expulsion was underway.

“The Dean said that I should wait in this room until I am called to speak.” Maria said to Aiden as they both stood in the hallway of the administration room. Maria was rubbing her wrist, it seemed to have been bruised on that day. But she wasn’t sure what she hit.

“They are truly trying to expel him, what I could gather is that they have already come to a decision. They accepted your witness statements as a way to make it seem as though Ventus had a more fair trial.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Why do you say that? That Brent guy tried to make out with me, wouldn’t that be enough to make him the one that should be on trial right now?” Maria asked Aiden.

“It’s a matter of evidence. On the Dean’s desk is already the expulsion letter too, so that is why I said that they have already come to a decision.” Aiden informed Maria.

“That sucks! That’s not fair! Is there any way we can get him not expelled?!” Maria asked Aiden.

Donald, one of the guys from the homecoming party walked past Maria and Aiden.

“So you two are going to be witnesses for this trial? You might as well leave or else your highschool life is just going to be harder. What you have to say won’t make any difference especially for a Freshman against a Senior. Too much money has been invested on us to risk losing potential Alumni.” Donald said to Aiden and Maria.

“So that’s why he is going to get expelled? Because of investment?” Maria asked Donald.

“He broke my nose, and busted my jaw, if it were up to me he would be going to real prison for Assault. He’s lucky he’s just getting expelled.” Donald responded to Maria.

“Did you know what he was trying to do with me in that gaming room?” Maria asked Donald.

“It’s a party, guys do what guys do.” Donald laughed.

Maria looked up at Aiden. And Aiden knew what that meant. So he caused the next step for Donald to take to cause him to fall on his face.

Donald got back up trying to hold his pride in tact. “Ahem, well, ignore that. If you two still decide to go through with it, I’m not going to say you are going to regret it, but… well you know.” Donald said before entering the room.

Maria had an angry scowl on her face.

“Gross.” Maria said under her breath. “Okay Aiden, I am going to go in now. You do your invisible thing and follow behind me.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Will do.” Aiden responded as they both entered the room.

A School Advisor was in the room waiting for Maria. She informed Maria of the procedures that she would have to do once she entered the room. The trial is semi-formal and she was to only answer the questions asked to her, and not to veer off with any off handed statements or she would be dismissed.

Maria agreed. And sat waiting in the room, beginning to feel bored.

In the trial room.

Ventus sat on the left side of the Dean’s desk which was sitting at the head of the room. There was an empty seat next to the Dean’s desk.  In the back of the room sat faculty members and students of the Legal Institution. On the right side was another long table which sat the Seniors and Juniors involved in the incident.

They wore casts and neck braces.

Soon the Dean walked in. And those present stood up. “Welcome in, the Honorable Dr. Herbert Hammons.” Miss Franco, the Police Officer said.

“You all may take your seats.” The Dean said as he sat down.

The Dean looked over all the papers that were situated at his desk. He looked over them to see if any new information came about. He stacked them up on his desk, and coughed, clearing his throat.

“As it stands, Mr. Ventus Marcos is accused of 7 counts of Assault against Mr. Brent Rosinski, Mr. Ricky Rivers, Mr. William Davis, Mr. Donald Hughey, Mr. George Critchfield, Mr. Daniel Leyva, and Mr. Lenard Johnson on the Saturday of Homecoming Weekend. The result of which left all 7 of them hospitalized. The incident is said to be unprovoked. What has the accused said?” The Dean said to Ventus.

An Advisor for Ventus stood up. “He pleads not guilty, citing he exercised ‘defense of others’.” The Advisor said.

The upperclassmen grinned.

“Very well, then we may commence with the discussion.” The Dean said as if he was annoyed.

Maria continued to sit in the room playing with her thumbs, Aiden said with her being unseen. Maria looked over at the School Advisor in the room. “Is there something I can do in here? I am bored out of my mind.” Maria said to her.

“You should be focusing on getting as clear of a picture in your head as possible of the events of that day.” The School Advisor said to Maria.

Maria rolled her head back. 

The first of the plaintiffs was Ricky. “So, here’s how it went. I was talking to Lenard about a TV show we watched. We were standing in front of the door to the gaming room because that’s where the punch bowl was. Then out of nowhere, that guy comes in and heads directly for the door. I moved out of the way to let him through but he decided to punch me anyway. In which case I started fighting back. Then he broke down the door and just started beating the mess out of Brent, so of course we jumped in to stop it.” Ricky said pointing at Ventus.

“That’s not what happened.” Ventus responded.

“Oh yeah, then what happened.” Ricky responded quickly to Ventus in an aggressive manner.

“Settle down.” The Dean commanded them. “You will have a chance to speak after we finish hearing the statements of the others.”

Ventus then sat back in his seat.

The next of the upperclassmen began to speak.

“It’s just as Ricky said.” Donald began to tell his point of view. “We were all just chilling, having fun at homecoming. Then this freshman just came in, scaring everyone at the party. I needed to make sure everyone was safe, so I tried to tackle him. But before I could he had already grabbed a weapon or something and started beating me. Then after that, all I could do was watch him run into the room and do the same to Brent.” Donald said as his statement.

Ventus shook his head in disbelief. “I didn’t even have a weapon.” Ventus said under his breath.

The rest of the upperclassmen said their statements and added even harsher details, and supported one another on the description of events.

In the end the statement went as follows. Ventus entered the party with a metal bar and began swinging it at the first guy he saw at the party. They heard Ventus say that all the Freshmen Females belonged to him. He immediately yelled at the girls at the party and forced them into a corner. As he did that he beat each guy with different objects at the party, until he entered the room with Brent who was a hospitable host. Brent was showing one of the girls his gaming collection. Ventus proceeded to beat Brent yelling that Brent tried to hide one girl from him. He didn’t stop until the Police came.

It was now time for Ventus’ statement. Ventus stood up.

“Is there even a point to this?” Ventus thought. “Oh well, it’ll work out somehow.” Ventus stood up. “On that night, I ran to the off campus housing because I knew that one of the girls, more precisely my Witness, was being put in a dangerous situation that was sexual in nature. To prevent harm, I entered the home. Along the way to keep the others who were also in uncomfortable situations, I told them to return to the dorm. When I noticed that one of the girls was missing, I heard a muffled sound coming from one of the rooms. I rushed in that direction and was blocked from entering the room. Ricky Rivers, Lenard Johnson, and George Critchfield were those who were blocking me. Donald Hughey, who was standing next to the door, told me that, ‘I couldn’t interrupt, they needed their privacy’. I knew exactly what that meant and immediately started kicking the door. Those 4 then started grabbing my neck, to which I punched them and broke down the door finding Brent Rosinski laying on top of Maria Li. I tackled Brent and encapcitated him to prevent him from pursuing her. After that, the rest of the guys at the party then started trying to beat me.” Ventus said as his statement.

The upperclassmen then snickered at Ventus’ story. “This guy really tried to make himself out to be a hero.” They laughed.

“Now that we have heard the statements of those directly involved, let’s hear from our witnesses.” The Dean said.

Silvia walked in. She sat in the seat next to the Dean.

“What was the sequence of events that night?” The Dean asked Silvia.

Silvia looked around at those who were present. She took a deep breath in, and exhaled. Ventus looked at Silvia and gave her a friendly smile. Silvia then returned one and began to speak. “We were all at the homecoming party. I was standing at the punch bowl, of course I didn’t drink any of it because it smelled weird. As time went on, I started to notice that Maria, who would never spend that much time alone with someone without me being able to hear her, was not around. I started looking around for her. Then I saw a group of guys standing weirdly in front of a door, like they were guarding it. I had a sick feeling in my stomach that they were there to prevent one of us from getting out. But I couldn’t do anything about it. Then Ventus ran through the door and told me to gather the rest of the girls and to gather together outside. He went to the door and asked them to move. But they just pushed him away. At which point I knew it might get dangerous, so I just did like he asked and looked for the other girls. Shortly after we all got outside, Maria ran out in front of us, and we all started running behind her towards the dorm.” Silvia said as her statement.

Donald then raised his hand. “What is it?” The Dean asked.

“May I ask a question Dr. Hammons?” Donald asked.

“Make sure to keep it on topic.” The Dean responded.

“You said you saw a group of guys standing at the door, as if they were guarding it. Would you perhaps be able to point out those guys you saw?” Donald asked Silvia. He figured that if she pointed to different guys than Ventus named, then his story would be falsified.

Silvia looked at the group of upperclassmen sitting in front of her. To her they seemed to all look quite similar. She did not focus on their appearance during the party, because she didn’t want any of them to give her any attention.

She was unsure. She knew that she may not be able to perfectly identify them. And not being able to guarantee that level of certainty made Silvia all the more nervous.

Ventus started to notice Silvia was becoming anxious. 

He then pretended to sneeze. The entire room looked over at him.

“My apologies, it must be the lighting in this room.” Ventus said. Silvia was confused by Ventus’ excuse. But with her focus being put on Ventus’ statement it cleared her thoughts up to get a clearer picture of the events of that night.

“Oh, I remember now. It was you, those two guys over there. And him.” Silvia said pointing at Ricky, Lenard, and George.

Donald then sat down.

Brent then stood up. “Are you really trying to accuse me over some feeling in your stomach?” Brent asked Silvia.

“It’s not just a feeling, knowledge gained through experience. Your subconscious mind notices details that I consciously could have missed.” Silvia responded.

“As if, you are making up that part of the story Ad Hoc.” Brent responded back.

Back in the room with Maria.

Maria tried to whisper to Aiden. “Hey Aiden, check what’s happening in that room, and find out how long until I come out.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then went through the walls and into the discussion room.

Silvia was being drilled with questions by the Upperclassmen. They were attempting to make her question her own thoughts.

Aiden looked around at the room. When he looked at Ventus, Ventus was staring directly at Aiden.

“He can’t see me. Probably just a coincidence.” Aiden thought to himself.

Ventus lifted up his fingers. He showed 7 on his hand. Then gave two thumbs up in that direction.

Aiden then returned to the room with Maria. Aiden got close to Maria’s ear. “Seems like they are still in an intense debate, but Ventus seems to think it’ll be 7 minutes until you go out there.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Ventus said 7 minutes? How’d he know you were there?” Maria asked.

“Who knows with him. He’s probably wrong though. My estimates would say you have about half an hour.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Half an hour!? That’s forever! I want to get back to the dorms!” Maria whined. The School Advisor looked over at Maria. It looked like Maria was talking to herself. Maria sat back up in her seat and chuckled. “Don’t mind me, I’m just bored.” Maria said nervously. “I’ll just assume 7 minutes is when I will go out there, so let me start preparing.” Maria thought to herself.

The Upperclassmen continued to question Silvia, and the Dean allowed them to continue with their barrage. Ventus then raised his hand.

Everyone stopped. “You have a question?” The Dean asked Ventus.

“Yes I do.” Ventus said, looking at Silvia. “How many hours of the day would you say you spend with Maria?” Ventus asked Silvia.

“Oh wow, that’s an interesting question. I would say maybe 19 hours, maybe even 20. That includes sleep.” Silvia responded.

“So we all can trust that when you say that Maria is noisy, that this is accurate, yes? Therefore, when you were at the party and did not hear her, that indicated to you that something was off.” Ventus said to Silvia.

“Exactly!” Silvia responded.

“He’s leading her.” Donald said to the Dean.

“Take your seats.” The Dean said to both Ventus and Donald.

“Well, that seems to be enough questions for you, Miss Reiners. You may return to the witness rooms.” The Dean said to Silvia.

Silvia was finally able to relax again. She stood up and left the discussion room.

“Well this went from a simple Assault case, to an attempted sexual assault case.” The Dean thought to himself trying to think of a way to end the trial quickly. “Everyone take a 5 minute break as we get the next witness to come out.” The Dean said allowing the students involved to stretch.

“Miss Li, it’s time.” The School Advisor said to Maria.

“Oh, already, that was fast.” Maria said, standing up from her seat. She was led into the discussion room where the upperclassmen were returning from getting a drink of water in the hallway.

Ventus stayed seated in his chair, he had a sad expression on his face.

Maria sat down in the witness seat, next to the Dean. Aiden was invisible behind Maria.

The 5 minute break ended and everyone returned to the discussion room. “Now Miss Maria Li, if you may, please go over the sequence of events of that Homecoming night.” The Dean said to Maria.

“Where to even start.” Maria said, trying to come up with a suitable point to begin telling her side of the story. “I guess I will start at the part where that guy threw me on the bed and got on top of me.” Maria said, pointing at Brent.

“That did not happen!” Brent responded quickly.

“That’s exactly what happened, after I wanted to leave the room, but it felt like it was locked from the outside. Then you called me a prude, and said that you wanted to give me a happy time. Luckily Ventus came in and started beating you up, because you weren’t listening to me at all.” Maria was addressing Brent.

“Calm down Miss Maria Li, just tell the events as they happened.” The Dean said to Maria.

“Sure.” Maria responded. “I went into the room because I wanted to see how he made one of my favourite games. Then while we were in there he was making me uncomfortable by getting really close to me. I told him that I was uncomfortable and told him to give me some space. But he kept on getting close. Then he suggested that we play one of his retro games, and I felt like that was a good time to have space for myself, and for him to have space for himself. But then he decided to grab my hand. At which point I didn’t want to be alone with him anymore. So I said that I wanted to leave. He responded by calling me a tease, and saying that he would be embarrassed if we didn’t do anything.” Maria was saying, then Brent interrupted.

“Didn’t happen.” Brent said aloud.

“Another outburst like that and you will have to wait in the hall.” The Dean said to Brent.

Maria then continued. “Well then after that he started trying to pull me to the bed. That’s when I punched him in his dumb face, and tried to leave the room. But it was blocked. Then he grabbed me again, and I tried to punch him again, but he caught it and pulled me down on the bed grabbing both my hands. I was angry at that point, but he was so heavy laying on top of me, I felt like I couldn’t breathe. My kicks weren’t hitting him at all. Then that’s when Ventus came in and tackled him. The other guys ran into the room, and in that chaos I ran out of the room and went directly to the dorms. I was not comfortable there at all.” Maria finished.

The upperclassmen just sat silently.

“No questions?” The Dean asked.

“Of course not, it’s all a lie.” Brent responded.

“Yeah, everyone saw her enter the room of her own free will, then she only left because the room became dangerous. You can’t lock someone inside that room.” Donald added.

“Oh, so I’m lying about your friend being a weirdo.” Maria responded.

“Obviously, you see this as your opportunity to get the entire school to think that Seniors want your freshman self. But in reality, you are hardly worth a look.” Donald responded.

“I’ve known Brent long enough, and I can tell you. You are not his type of girl.” Lenard added.

“What’s that supposed to mean? He wasn’t thinking about any of that when he tried to force himself on me.” Maria responded.

The discussion room then started to get loud. The Dean then silenced everyone.

“We’ve seemed to have moved away from the focus of the trial. This is a discussion of Ventus’ assaults on these gentlemen. Not on the interaction between you and Mr. Brent Rosinski.” The Dean said.

Ventus’ advisor then stood up. “This is relevant to the case. Mr. Ventus Marcos pleaded Not Guilty on the basis of Protecting others from harm. If it is shown that Miss Maria Li was in the process of being harmed, then Ventus’ actions would be justified.” The Advisor said.

The Dean then looked at the Advisor. He looked over at Maria. He then noticed a bruise on Maria’s wrist. The Dean was able to tell that this bruise came from being pulled. That would be enough to get Brent in more trouble than Ventus would get if they continued the case. Ventus being only 12 would just be expelled and returned home. But Brent being 17 could be tried in actual court and be sent to Prison if found guilty, and that would stain the reputation of the school and Brent’s.

“This discussion is concluded.” The Dean said standing up from his seat.

Those in the discussion room looked at him confused. The discussion seemed far from over, yet he ended it.

“All Present Stand.” Miss Franco said aloud. Everyone stood up.

“Miss Maria Li, come with me to my office.” The Dean said.

Maria looked confused but agreed.

The Dean then left and Maria followed. Aiden followed behind them.

Once the door shut everyone present were left confused. They then started exiting the room.

The Dean then looked out the window of his office. “So what outcome did you want to see from this trial?” The Dean asked Maria.

“An outcome? What do you mean?” Maria asked.

“I’m offering you an outcome that you would like. If you do not take this case any further than it already is.” The Dean said to Maria.

“Not taking Ventus’ case any further? I didn’t have any reason to do that.” Maria responded.

“You know what I mean. You’ve gotten into this school, you are intelligent enough to understand what I am trying to get you to comprehend.” The Dean said to Maria.

Maria then thought to herself. “An outcome… hmm. Well I don’t want Ventus to be expelled.” Maria said to the Dean.

“Very well.” The Dean responded.

“I do want Brent to be expelled though.” Maria added.

“We can’t do that.” The Dean said to Maria.

“Then Community Service for all the Upperclassmen guys?” Maria suggested.

The Dean then looked at Maria. He thought to himself for a bit. “And would not have you not want to talk about this story from this point forward?” The Dean asked Maria.

“Sure. Especially if they have to clean toilets for like a few months.” Maria said.

The Dean then walked over to his desk, and brought out a form to write out a Non-disclosure agreement. 

Maria watched the Dean type up the form. She rubbed her bruise as she stood there.

The Dean looked up at Maria. “You should go to the Nurses office immediately after this to get that faded out.” The Dean said to Maria.

Maria looked at her wrist. “Oh this? It’s not so bad, it’ll fade on its own.” Maria responded.

“You are going to the nurse’s office after this, understood?” The Dean said to Maria.

“Okay.” Maria responded.

Aiden in the back felt a bit upset at the way he was talking to Maria.

The Dean finished typing and handed the form to Maria. “Read over this, and if you agree, just sign your name on the bottom. This is being recorded for verification purposes.” The Dean said to Maria.

Maria then looked over at the camera. She grabbed the paper and signed it.

“Okay, done.” Maria said, setting the pen down.

“Now head to the nurse’s office.” The Dean said to Maria.

Maria then turned and left the room. Aiden then reappeared.

“You should have asked for more.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I was put on the spot, I couldn’t think of anything.” Maria responded to Aiden.

Aiden then looked down at Maria. “Are you actually going to go to the nurse’s office?” Aiden asked Maria.

“As if, you can just heal this up right?” Maria asked Aiden.

Aiden pointed at Maria’s wrist and the bruise vanished.

“Usually Bruises don’t mean anything, but the Dean seemed hard focused on it.” Maria said to Aiden.

“It was likely evidence against an outcome he wanted.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh! So I probably got this from when that guy pulled me to the bed!” Maria realized where the bruise came from. “I just thought I hit something while running back to the dorms and didn’t feel it. Dang, I could have asked for a lot more.” Maria responded disappointed at her realization.

Aiden stood over Maria. “I can change the form to add what you actually want.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria then thought for a bit. “Since they put Ventus through so much, and I bet the Dean wouldn’t give Ventus something to make up for us, add that our Class secures like a million dollars in funding, and that he is the one that decides where it goes.” Maria said to Aiden.

“That’s quite a bit. Why Ventus and not under your control?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Because he was supposed to be Class President, but because of all of this he didn’t get to. So this is a way for me to get my actual vote recognized.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“Very well. Then I will handle that.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Awesome! Okay, then I am going to return to the dorm. I want to change out of these clothes!” Maria said, grabbing her shirt.

“I will meet you there after I change the information.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria walked to the dorms.

Aiden entered the room and found that the Dean was talking to Brent and the other upperclassmen. He was lecturing them on what they did at the party and how they put the reputation of the school at risk. He explained to them what their punishment was, and lectured them on being unable to use their training to control a single freshman.

Aiden found the document and added information to it. On the camera he altered the image of the document to reflect the change that was made.

“That should do it.” Aiden thought to himself.

Aiden then made his way back to the dorm. But before he left the room he found Silvia and Ventus talking to one another.

Silvia seemed to have been conversing with Ventus, as if she was trying to understand his feelings. However, Aiden could have cared less about that and continued onward.

Aiden knocked on the door of Room 808.

He saw that it was just Maria inside and decided to walk through the door to Maria. Maria had finished changing out of her school outfit and was in her more comfortable nightwear.

Maria looked at the time. “Dang it, it’s already a bit late to be going into the dinning hall, it’s going to be super quiet in there.” Maria complained to Aiden.

“Then I suppose that you want to go out for today’s dinner?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Yes I do! I am in the mood for a Giant Bucket of Fried Chicken, and a ton of Fries and Sauce!” Maria said to Aiden.

“Any particular restaurant or is any place okay with you?” Aiden asked Maria, trying to clarify a destination.

“Any place really, but the crispier the better.” Maria said to Aiden imitating what it would be like to crunch down on a giant Chicken Thigh.

“Very well, we can leave the room today, since Silvia isn’t here.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria jumped up on Aiden’s back and they both went out of the window to the room. In the air Aiden dropped Maria into her usual clear ball.

“We are experts at this now!” Maria laughed as she was being carried several hundred meters in the air.

“The fear of heights seems to be relatively common among Humans. However, you are not fazed in the slightest, that definitely makes my duties easier.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“I think I do fear heights a bit, but since I know that you got me, there is no danger at all. It’s just ultimate freedom!” Maria said, looking down at the town below.

The street lights were beginning to come on.

“Do you think anyone down there ever sees us flying this high?” Maria asked Aiden.

“That would be difficult for them, considering from this height we would be only a few millimeters long. But it is definitely a possibility. They would likely figure that we were a large bird.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Or a UFO.” Maria responded quickly.

“Yes, we would be classified as an Unidentified Flying Object.” Aiden responded.

“I mean like Aliens, not like a meteor or anything mundane.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“I would like to think that the typical human would assume the most likely possibility rather than assume it was an extraterrestrial. They would have to travel several hundred if not thousands of light-years, using technology beyond anything we have currently, and have culture which would be the most foreign possible, just to be seen by a random person on the ground. Then leave without doing anything.” Aiden explained to Maria.

“So you’re saying that there are no Aliens then?” Maria asked.

“If there were, they would have to be beyond my comprehension. In which case it is pointless for me to even think about it. I can’t comprehend it anyways.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“I think technically, you would be classified as an Alien.” Maria pointed out to Aiden.

“No, I am still from Earth, just in a different phase.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, culturally, physically, mentally and a whole bunch of other stuff makes you different from Humans, so I think you match what it would be to be considered an Alien.” Maria tried to use Aiden’s reasoning against him.

“I am closer to Humanity culturally than Humanity is to Fish and Alligators, yet all of those are Earth creatures. To be truly similar to Aliens you would not be able to guess my motivations.” Aiden said to Maria, he found a location to land at so that Maria could eat.

“Who’s that guy that you take orders from, the Almighty or something like that. What if he was an Alien?” Maria asked Aiden.

They both landed. And Aiden was surprised by Maria’s question. He thought about it for a little.

“Actually, that’s not something I’ve considered.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Yeah, and so, since you come from him, or her… or them? Whatever, since you are a part of them, then wouldn’t that make you an Alien?” Maria asked Aiden.

“The Almighty is indeed beyond my comprehension, and is so different from anything I can reference the Almighty against. I don’t know their origin, nor motivation. That is an interesting thought.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“See!? And I bet wherever they are from, there is an entire population of them. And they can probably do whatever they want. And… I actually don’t know where I was going with that.” Maria said, trying to recall why she brought up the idea of Aliens.

She then smelled the Chicken. And her mouth watered.

“Oh yeah! Now this is why they would come to Earth!” Maria said, rushing into the restaurant.

Aiden followed behind her as they both went in to eat.

After all of that was done, Silvia requested for Aiden to return to his room. Maria and Silvia talked about the trial that happened earlier that day. And Aiden sat in his room.

Later on that night. A bit after midnight Ventus returned to the room for the first time in a few days.

His cheerfulness had vanished, and he returned to the room bummed out. Aiden watched him go to his bed without saying a word.

Ventus turned away from Aiden. Aiden could hear Ventus having difficulty breathing as if he was fighting back against something. Eventually the sound stopped and Ventus was asleep.

The next day the freshmen returned to classes. Maria got up in a good mood and rushed out to meet up with Aiden. Along the way to school the Upperclassmen involved in the case were picking up trash around campus. They had to get up at 6am to begin their duties so they could finish before classes.

As the freshmen walked by, the upperclassmen glared at them, and to some of the Freshmen boys they threatened them.

Ventus was the last guy to get to class. His backpack seemed to have been hit with opened soda cans.

Miss Creed took attendance.

Maria looked over at Ventus. “Aww, he looks so sad.” Maria thought to herself.

Miss Creed handed Ventus some of the quizzes that he missed. They were marked with zeros. She handed it to him so that he could look over the answers to use to study.

“Thank you Miss Creed.” Ventus said looking at the scores.

When it came time for lunch, Ventus went to the tables of his classmates but they were silent and didn’t want to speak with him. Feeling that his presents were a bother Ventus decided to eat at a table alone.

Maria, Silvia and Aiden all sat at their usual table.

“Why are they all acting so mean!?” Maria said watching the other tables ignore Ventus.

“After the trial a bunch of the Upperclassmen waited outside of the dorms and said that if anyone continued to associate with Ventus that they would receive the same treatment he did.” Silvia said to Maria.

Maria scoffed. “What a bunch of cowards.” Maria responded to how easily it was to get her classmates to turn their back on their friends.

“If you think about it, they’ve only known Ventus for a little over a month. They are going to be in highschool for the next 4 years. So ditching such a short relationship to guarantee a better few years would be a logical choice.” Aiden said to Maria.

“It’s a heartless choice, that’s what it is.” Maria responded.

“Wow, look who’s talking. When we were in middle school you didn’t let a single person even try to make friends with Angeal. That was rather heartless in itself.” Silvia said to Maria.

“I’m not heartless! You all weren’t trying to be his friend. You wanted something more than that.” Maria pointed out to Silvia.

“Please, you have no idea what my motivations are.” Silvia responded.

They both heard Ventus finish. He then left the dining hall. They all watched him leave.

“Wow, after the heroism that he showed on that day, and this is how we treat him…” Silvia said to herself.

“Angeal, you are going to need to cheer him up when you sit in the room together.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Why would I want to do that?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Because I feel bad for him. He is in this situation because of me.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“It was ultimately his choice.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria pointed her spoon at Aiden. “You know what would have happened if he didn’t make that choice?” Maria responded with a louder tone.

Aiden was taken aback. Silvia was stunned that Maria raised her voice to Aiden. 

“Very well. I will try to cheer him up.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Good.” Maria responded as she continued to eat her pudding.

The school day continued as usual. However, when Ventus reached to carry the Freshmen Flag, Zofia grabbed it from him.

“This isn’t your job anymore Ventus, I am the Class President.” Zofia said to Ventus.

“You’re right.” Ventus said, handing it over to Zofia.

The class then went on their run. The motivation seemed rather sumber, but it was expected since when Ventus led it, the run was loud and more cheerful compared to the other classes.

After the run, all the students were permitted to return to their dorms.

When Ventus went to return Maria stopped him.

“I liked it better when you were holding the flag.” Maria said to Ventus.

Ventus smiled. “Thanks, I liked it better too. I hope my mood isn’t bringing yours down.” Ventus said to Maria.

“No, I get it. I know what it’s like to be purposefully ignored.” Maria said remembering what it was like before she met Aiden.

“Yeah, well it’ll get better for me. I knew this would happen, but I prefer this result over the other, even though this outcome is definitely much worse for me.” Ventus responded to Maria.

“Oh, you still need to tell me how you knew to come to that house.” Maria said to Ventus.

Ventus smirked. “Now would you believe me if I said I was an Alien.” Ventus said to Maria.

Maria snapped her fingers. “I knew it.” Maria responded.

Ventus then smiled. “Thanks, you cheered me up a bit. Eventually I will tell you all about what I could do. Especially since I know what you and Angeal can do.” Ventus said to Maria. He then started walking to the dorms.

She then grabbed his shirt again, and stopped him.

“We will be your friends if you need it.” Maria said to Ventus.

Ventus nodded his head.

Maria then let go of Ventus’ shirt and he walked off.

The noises of the Upperclassmen could be heard as they were preparing to throw stuff at Ventus.

“He must be on a probationary period, that would be my closest guess as to why he isn’t retaliating.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That isn’t fair. But it is like those Highschool movies. Maybe they were more real than I thought.” Maria said to Aiden. “Okay, well it’s food time! Let’s eat.” Maria said to Aiden as she went off to the dining hall.

When they got back from dinner, Maria and Aiden went to Room 808. Silvia was not there, which was unusual because she would typically be studying.

“She must have gone to the library or something.” Maria said as they entered the room. “Guess that means we can be as loud as we want finally.” Maria said to Aiden.

“You mean you could be as loud as you want.” Aiden corrected Maria.

“Tomatoes, Potatoes. It makes no difference.” Maria said to Aiden as she began to play the MP3 that Leanne gave her for her birthday.

Some time passed. Maria and Aiden brought out a board game she borrowed from the Recreation Room.

“Now don’t cheat again.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Well that’s ironic.” Aiden said to Maria.

The door to Room 808 opened.

Silvia walked in, she squinted because of how loud Maria’s music was. “Sheesh, turn it down a bit.” Silvia said to Maria.

“No way, we were here first, so this time it’s you who is interrupting.” Maria said to Silvia.

Silvia entered the room, and she brought Ventus with her.

They were surprised. “Hello guys.” Ventus said entering the room. Aiden seemed a bit annoyed.

“Can we join you guys in the game you’re playing?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“Oh no, I couldn’t interrupt you all like that.” Ventus said, trying to decline.

“Sure, I was about to win anyway.” Maria said to Ventus.

Silvia chuckled. “That would be a first.” Silvia responded.

Ventus, and Silvia sat down.

Maria reset the board and they all rolled for turns.

The result was Maria was going first, then Silvia, then Aiden, and last was Ventus. While they were playing Ventus looked at the board and Aiden watched him to see if he noticed anything unusual.

“Okay Angeal, it’s your turn to roll.” Silvia said to Aiden.

Aiden grabbed the dice, he then rolled. The dice landed on 12. Double Sixes.

Aiden moved his pieces around the board.

“This is fun.” Ventus said, breaking the silence. “It reminds me of when I used to play board games with my siblings.” Ventus continued.

“Oh, you have siblings, I didn’t know that.” Silvia said to Ventus.

Ventus grabbed the dice. He was rolling them in his hands. “Yeah, I have 7 siblings, 8 if you include me.” Ventus said letting go of the dice. It rolled a 4. He picked up a random card and lost some money.

“7 siblings! That must be really annoying! I just have one sister and  I can barely stand her.” Maria said to Ventus.

“Nah, it’s not annoying at all. I love spending time with them. We always used to play games around the house like hide and seek, tag, or just playing with toys. It was a great time, never a moment without friends.” Ventus said to them.

“Wow, then leaving all of them must suck.” Silvia said to Ventus.

“Yeah, but it had to be done. I have a mission I need to accomplish.” Ventus said to the group.

“What mission is that?” Aiden asked Ventus with a serious tone.

“Well if I tell you, you guys are probably going to think I’m weird. Maybe I will tell the entire story some other time.” Ventus said, looking back down at the board.

“No, please tell us! I won’t think you are weird. Like Angeal is a weird person too, so there’s no way you can surprise me.” Maria said to Ventus.

“I am not weird.” Aiden responded to Maria.

Ventus then laughed. “Okay, then I’ll give you a short run down.” Ventus then took a breath in. “When I was like 9 years old or something I was able to see an outcome for the Earth, and from that I knew that I had to become a suitable enough person to meet what was required to get to that outcome. So everything that I do is for the advancement of that goal.” Ventus said to them.

“So, like you had a dream, and you liked it so much that you want it to become a reality?” Silvia asked Ventus.

“Well, it’s not really a dream.” Ventus then thought a little more. “I can’t show you all, not yet.” Ventus responded.

“Oh! I get it, you were able to see the future!” Maria said to Ventus.

“Yeah, that’s closer to it.” Ventus responded to Maria.

“That’s not possible.” Aiden responded. “The future is an accumulation of present events, it’s not something that already exists, so there isn’t anything to see.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“You’re right, but you are also wrong.” Ventus responded to Aiden.

Silvia and Maria’s faces were surprised. This was the first time someone referred to one of Aiden’s statements as wrong.

“I’m not wrong. I have a pretty strong knowledge on everything that exists, and even things that you couldn’t imagine exist.” Aiden said to Ventus.

Ventus smirked at Aiden. “Interesting, maybe there’s something you’d like to say to back up your statement?” Ventus said to Aiden.

“You have to prove yours first, then I will give you my reasoning.” Aiden responded to Ventus.

“Very well. This is as good a moment as ever.” Ventus said to Aiden. “I know that you are from another realm.” Ventus said to Aiden.

Maria and Aiden were surprised by Ventus’ statement.

“Another realm? What does that mean?” Silvia asked.

“It’s nothing. Nothing at all.” Maria said to Silvia.

“You told me yourself, but in another sequence of events.” Ventus said to Aiden.

Silvia looked over at Aiden. Maria gestured for Aiden to put Silvia to sleep. Aiden then gestured and Silvia went to sleep.

Now it was just Maria, Aiden and Ventus speaking.

“Okay, now how do you know that?” Aiden asked Ventus. Ventus looked at Maria. 

“Is it okay to discuss this with her?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“She already knows.” Aiden responded.

“Well I’m not too sure myself, but I do know this. You referred to the place you were from as the Heavenly Realm. And that it exists in a realm that is right next to ours. You are also a segment of Omne, and… wait.” Ventus then paused. “You don’t know that information yet do you?” Ventus asked.

“Omne? You mean the Almighty?” Aiden corrected Ventus.

“Yeah, the Almighty. We can go with that.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“Wow, he sure knows a lot about you Angeal. He must be one of you guys.” Maria said to Aiden.

“He’s not an aspect.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“How about an Alien?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“You’re not that either. I don’t know how you got your information. But this does verify that you aren’t just making stuff up.” Aiden responded to Ventus.

“So, could I also call you Aiden? Since that’s the name you are called where you are from. Angeal is something you just made up for school.” Ventus asked Aiden.

“Sure, do whatever you please.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Oh, also, the reason you couldn’t erase that from my memory is because it comes from an event that hasn’t happened yet.” Ventus told Aiden.

“Wow, he does know everything about you Aiden. What about me?” Maria asked Ventus.

“I see so much for you, but it’s already getting really late. We could talk about this stuff for hours. But I do look forward to becoming closer friends with you all. Since you are really the only ones who can take care of themselves from the bullying.” Ventus said to Maria and Aiden as he stood up.

“Yeah, you are now a 10 on the interesting scale.” Maria said to Ventus.

“Thanks.” Ventus responded. “And make sure when you lay her down you place the cover only over one of her shoulders. That’ll keep her from feeling too hot.” Ventus said leaving Room 808.

Aiden laid Silvia on her bed. And the two just talked to one another about the knowledge that Ventus had.

Eventually it became too late in the night for Aiden to be allowed in Maria’s room. So he had to leave and return to room 888.

Aiden found Ventus staring at the wall again.

“So what do you see?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Just an interesting world I guess.” Ventus responded. Ventus then looked over at Aiden. “I feel like we are much more connected than we could imagine. However, we came at it from different angles.” Ventus said to Aiden.

Aiden then recalled what Vanoe said to him. “Maybe we turn out to be brothers.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Brothers? Now that would be interesting. Maybe that is what happens to me.” Ventus responded.

Ventus and Aiden sat in the room without saying much to one another. As the days passed Ventus slowly was incorporated into Maria’s and Aiden’s group. To the dismay of Aiden.

The bullying at the school grew a little bit each day. The school day was a chore for Ventus, but at least he got to look forward to returning to room 888. Though Aiden didn’t treat Ventus friendly, it was a lot better than the way everyone else did.

Angel Misery 2: Chapter Three

Homecoming

The first month of freshman year had passed and it was now the time for homecoming and class elections. The forerunners for class president were Zofia Johns, Tammy Crabtree, and Ventus Marcos. For treasurer were Gary Khan and Rebecca Burns. And for Public Relations were Maria Li, Johnnie O’Conner and Joyce Smith.

The overall physical performance in marksmanship and physical fitness had risen sharply due to the guidance that Ventus made sure each student had. He truly wanted to make sure that everyone was enjoying their time at the school.

Maria, Silvia and Aiden sat at their table during lunch.

“So how high do you think my chances of getting elected for Public Relations are?” Maria asked Aiden and Silvia.

“Well you are running against Joyce, and she has a better eye for spin and opportunities. So I would say that you probably have a 20% chance of getting elected.” Silvia said to Maria as she ate her Sushi.

“20%?! No way, so you are saying that Joyce has an 80% chance of getting it? But there’s only like 22 people in our class. So that means you think I’ll just receive only Angeal’s, Yours, someone else’s and my own votes?” Maria asked Silvia.

“Oh, on second thought, maybe you have a 12% chance of winning.” Silvia joked with Maria.

“That’s probably not entirely inaccurate, the other two you are running against have done much more in the way of trying to get elected. We hardly spend time with anyone outside of school.” Aiden said to Maria.

Rebecca then came to their table. “Hello guys! Some of the seniors in the World Economic Leaders club invited me to a homecoming party they are having in one of their off campus houses. They said that I could invite anyone I wanted. So I figured that us girls can all go together.” Rebecca said to Maria and Silvia.

“A party? Off campus? That sounds like fun!” Maria responded.

“Is it safe? How well do you know these guys?” Silvia asked.

“Well they are in the same club as me, and I talk to them a lot. They help me out with learning about the current state of International Business Relations. So they are super friendly.” Rebecca responded.

Maria then looked at Aiden. “I guess since she’s only inviting the girls, that means you have to hang out with Ventus alone during homecoming.” Maria laughed at Aiden.

“That’s unfortunate.” Aiden responded.

“That doesn’t sound bad to me. Ventus seems like a cool guy, definitely a motivated person. I’m sure you’d warm up to him if you gave him a chance.” Rebecca said to Aiden. It was no secret that out of all the students that Aiden is the least friendly person.

“I’ll keep that in mind.” Aiden responded.

“But anyways, we can all meet up at the dorm entrance and walk there together! It’s going to be fun.” Rebecca said to Maria and Silvia.

Maria stuck out her thumb. “It sure will be.” Maria responded.

“I guess I can take a short reprieve from studying for one night.” Silvia agreed.

Rebecca then left to invite the other girls in the class.

“Looks like we have plans now for homecoming weekend, what are you going to do when we are both gone?” Maria looked at Aiden with a cocky smile.

“I suppose I can just stand outside of the house and wait for you all to get finished.” Aiden responded.

“You really don’t have anything to do when Maria isn’t there? She’s really messing up your life.” Silvia noted to Aiden.

Maria then pointed at Silvia. “First off, no I am not. And second off, you can’t just stand outside staring at someone’s house. That’s weird. Just sit in the dorms and play games with the boys. Maybe you all should get together and throw your own party.” Maria said.

“Who would organize that?” Aiden responded to Maria.

They all then saw Ventus walking around the dinning hall. He had a smile on his face and laughed at each table he went to. Nodding his head after each conversation.

He came to Aiden, Maria and Silvia’s table.

“How’s lunch treating you guys? Are your taste buds in the mood for something that isn’t here?” Ventus asked them.

“No, we are good.” Silvia responded to Ventus trying to get him to hurry on and move.

“That’s great to hear. Well anyways. I’m sure Rebecca had already come to your table and invited you to that Upperclassmen Party. But if you aren’t going, I am going to host a party in the dorms for whoever is left. Come by if you want.” Ventus said to them with a smile on his face.

Maria and Silvia looked at Aiden.

“Sure. I don’t have anything else to do.” Aiden responded.

“Awesome, well now it just got even better!” Ventus responded, nodding his head. “If you want me to get anything just let me know.” Ventus said to Aiden before leaving the table.

“Look at that Angeal, now you have plans for this weekend.” Maria teased Aiden.

“It seems that way.” Aiden responded.

In the second half of the school day the students of the school all met up at the Stadium. Cannons were shot off and the Military performed their Silent Drill. Then fighter jets flew overhead with the flags colours, and then with the school colours.

Each of the flag bearers of each class had to march on the field and present the pieces of the school’s motto.

Ventus spoke first with the Freshmen’s Flag. “We Carve the path towards the future with innovation and commitment.”

Jordan spoke next, holding the Sophomore’s Flag. “We provide an example for the Generation after us, and the realization of the dreams of those who came before.”

Kyle spoke next, holding the Junior’s Flag. “We train our minds, bodies and spirits to tackle any of our Global Issues, and conquer them without a second thought.”

Then finally George spoke, holding the Senior’s Flag. “In time ours will be etched into the annals of History. As were the names of our forebears, for we are the Students of The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders.”

Another round of cannons were shot off and the performances for each club were underway.

The AI and Robotics Development Institute presented their new project, an AI that was able to maneuver around an obstacle course without being given prior input. It was able to process the data from it’s input sensors in real time, and was able to make decisions based on it.

The Robot finished the course then waved up at the students in the stands.

Maria cheered because she helped build pieces of it. Though she didn’t help much when it came to writing it’s programs. Aiden helped a lot with that part.

“This is already way better than the performances from Middle School.” Maria said to Aiden.

“A lot can be done when everyone has a single goal and a lot of money.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Next year, I am going to be the one down there showing off our robot!” Maria said to Aiden pointing down at the Juniors and Seniors of the AI and Robotics Development Institute.

“That’s definitely an obtainable goal given the speed of your current progress.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I can probably do it without much help from you.” Maria laughed.

“That may be a stretch.” Aiden joked with Maria.

Eventually the Homecoming Celebration ended and the Students were allowed to return to their dorms. 

Maria excitedly jumped around having left over excitement from the Homecoming performances.

“You seem to be a much more hyper ball of energy tonight.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria swung around the light poles on campus.

“How can you not be excited about that. This school is so awesome!” Maria said to Aiden. She then stopped. “Though we do get a lot of homework and readings to do. And that’s not even thinking about all the running.” Maria said to herself.

“The homework is hardly an issue, you just copy off of mine.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That’s true, but it still takes time to copy all the answers.” Maria laughed as she then swung around the poles again.

Aiden and Maria entered Room 808. Silvia had already finished her homework and was practicing her violin. She watched as Maria came in with a ton of energy.

“Well I guess that’s the end of my practice.” Silvia said, putting down her violin.

“You should have stayed outside more, it feels so nice!” Maria said to Silvia.

“No thankyou. We are going to be outside all night tomorrow. So I’d rather be inside today.” Silvia responded to Maria.

Aiden then sat down on the floor on Maria’s side.

“So Angeal, how are you feeling about this school? We aren’t the top of the class anymore.” Silvia asked Aiden.

“The grading criteria of this school is strange. So even if I knew everything there was to know, I likely still would not be at the top of the class.” Aiden responded.

“You guys are too focused on grades. Remember what Miss Creed said. In the real world, there isn’t grades, only decisions.” Maria imitated Miss Creed.

“Wow, look at Maria being the ideal Student.” Silvia joked with Maria.

Maria grabbed her pillow and threw it at Silvia. Silvia blocked it with an overhead block, like the ones they learned in Martial Arts class.

“My reflexes are too fast for that to work now.” Silvia smirked at Maria.

“Well maybe I should use a bullet next time.” Maria returned a smirk.

“That’s crossing the line a bit.” Silvia said to Maria.

“I’m only joking ha.” Maria responded.

The group hung out in Room 808 before Silvia finally kicked Aiden out of the room. Aiden then returned to Room 888 where he found Ventus sitting. 

Ventus looked up and saw Aiden. “Welcome back Roomie. Done having fun with your old classmates?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“Yes, they are getting ready for bed.” Aiden said before he sat at his desk.

Ventus then looked at Aiden. “I know you are curious about what I look at when I stare at this wall.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“That may have crossed my mind a few times.” Aiden responded.

“Well, I’m not actually looking at the wall. It’s just a place that is void of information so it’s an ideal place for me to get a clear picture of what I actually see.” Ventus explained to Aiden.

“What do you see when you look there?” Aiden asked.

Ventus then thought a bit. “Ah, it’s like a transparent overlay of stuff. It changes a lot, so I really either have to focus on it, or be in the zone.” Ventus responded.

“Sounds like daydreaming.” Aiden said to Ventus with his typical serious tone.

“Well I know what daydreaming feels like, this is different. But I don’t need to explain it further. There’s nothing I can say that would clarify it.” Ventus laughed rubbing his neck as he spoke with Aiden.

“Then we can leave it at that. I already got a satisfying enough answer.” Aiden responded.

“I wish you could see what I could see. Then this would be a lot easier.” Ventus said to Aiden.

Aiden then thought to himself. “I can see what you see, it’s just that what your mind is doing is structured in a way that makes no sense.” Aiden thought when looking at Ventus.

“Well, I am going to go to sleep. Got a lot of planning to do tomorrow for the dorm party!” Ventus said laying down.

Aiden laid down but remained awake. 

The next morning Ventus woke up early and headed outside to get decorations. He seemed to be in high spirits.

Aiden got out of bed and waited outside of Room 808.

Maria came out and opened the door for Aiden. “How was your sleep! Are you excited for tonight’s party?” Maria asked Aiden.

“No, not in particular.” Aiden responded.

“I guess that’s because you will just be partying in the dorms.” Maria reminded Aiden.

The group wasted time just to get the day over with. Ventus, Keith, and Steve were helping Aiden put up the decorations for the dorm party.

“Yeah, make sure that the punch bowl is in the center of the table, we wouldn’t want it to tilt because of its unbalanced center of gravity from resonance.” Keith said to Steve.

“It’s a punch bowl, the resonance needed to cause it to spill would require everyone in the building to move at the same frequency. That’s just not likely.” Steve responded.

“Wow, even a simple thing like putting up drinks causes everyone here to think about science.” Maria said as she and Aiden returned to the elevator.

“Oh wait, I need to go upstairs too!” Ventus said, jumping on the elevator with them.

They all stood in it.

“Just about an hour left before everything gets started.” Ventus smiled at Aiden and Maria.

“Glad you are hosting something like this for the guys. Angeal doesn’t know what to do when I’m not around.” Maria joked with Ventus.

“I can tell.” Ventus grinned. “You guys are like the bestest of best friends.” Ventus said to Maria.

“Look! Someone finally notices. See, I knew that you had a keen eye.” Maria responded to Ventus.

“I’d have to be blind not to see it.” Ventus then laughed. The elevator reached the 8th Floor and the group left.

“See you guys later.” Ventus said going to Room 862.

Maria grabbed a bunch of her clothes and asked Aiden which one she would look the best in. Aiden had no strong opinion about any of it.

“I could just be invisible with you while you are out at the party. I can’t see myself enjoying being around humans.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That kinda breaks our agreement of independence. I have to get to know people. How am I ever going to develop any social skills if you are always around. I feel like I don’t notice social cues as well as everyone else.” Maria said to Aiden while holding up a black skirt.

“You might get cold wearing that.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Not if I wear leggings.” Maria responded.

“Sure, I suppose that would resolve it.” Aiden said to Maria.

Some time passed and Silvia returned from the Spa.

“Well time for me to get dressed. So that means you have to leave Angeal.” Silvia said to Aiden.

Aiden then got up and left room 808.

Aiden stood outside the door. He watched as the boys continued to use the elevators bringing items downstairs.

The freshmen girls then started to make their way downstairs.

Soon Maria and Silvia came out to join them. Aiden went on the elevator to go downstairs with them.

“I bet you would be more comfortable if you were a girl.” Tammy said to Aiden.

“That probably would have been a wise decision.” Aiden responded.

“Yeah, we should have gotten Angel to get accepted into this school.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Whose Angel?” Silvia asked.

“She’s… ah…” Maria tried to think. “She’s Angeal’s Sister that lives in Europe.” Maria said.

“Angeal has a sister? I did not know that.” Silvia responded.

The girls then left the elevator.

“That was a terrible lie.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I panicked.” Maria responded.

The girls then all grouped together and headed out to go to the off campus houses.

“Remember guys, if you need any of us to go there just call us, and we will show up immediately.” Ventus said to Rebecca.

“We are going to be there as a group, so there shouldn’t be any issues.” Rebecca responded as they left.

“Oh, what was that? Does someone have a crush on Rebecca?” Antonio joked with Ventus.

“Ha, no. I just want to make sure they are safe is all.” Ventus smiled, feeling embarrassed.

“I think Zofia or Joyce would be a better match for you, Ventus.” Richard joked as well.

The guys were starting to joke with one another as Aiden already felt bored.

Then they turned on some music.

“Okay guys! Let’s get rocking!” David yelled out, pouring a cup of punch into his mouth.

The girls made it into the large Mansion.

Johnnie, Zofia, Luetta, Tammy, Joyce, Rebecca, Joanne, Maria, and Silvia stayed together initially at the party.

They all went to the punch bowl and tried to get comfortable with being at the party.

A Junior by the name of Donald Hughey came up to Luetta.

“Hey, so where are you from?” Donald asked Luetta.

She was initially surprised by his showing up out of nowhere. “I’m from Indiana.” Luetta responded.

“Indiana, so you are from a midwest suburb huh, I heard you guys get crazy there. I myself am from Washington. So if you want to look at some tall trees, I got you.” Donald tried to joke with Luetta.

“Yeah, I guess that’s what people say about it…” Luetta responded feeling a bit nervous.

“Come on, enjoy yourselves girls. You guys are freshmen right? It’s time to meet some of the guys.” Donald said to the girls who were still hanging around the punch bowl.

“See if they’d be down for some truth or dare.” Another Junior named Lenard Johnson asked Donald.

“Yeah, are you guys into truth or dare?” Donald asked.

Silvia shook her head. She had no interest in participating in the game. 

“You aren’t going to have us do anything gross right?” Maria asked Donald.

“What’s the point of truth or dare if all we’re going to do is safe stuff.” Donald responded. The two Juniors went to one of the bedrooms to play.

“Is this really how a highschool party is?” Joyce asked.

“I’ll find the guys from my Institute. They are really nice.” Rebecca said, looking around for them.

Silvia looked at Maria. “Feeling bored without Angeal?” Silvia asked.

“No, I’m just not used to this yet.” Maria responded by unfolding her arms.

Several guys from the World Economic Leaders Institute came up to the girls.

“How are you girls liking the party?” Ricky asked the group.

“What are we supposed to do?” Zofia asked.

“Well it’s a party, you just talk to people and see if you have anything in common.” Ricky responded.

“I’ll start first, my name is William Davis, and I’m into Building Radio Transmitters during my down time.” William said.

“Oh, like for Planes?” Joyce asked.

“Yeah, exactly!” William responded with enthusiasm. 

The two then started speaking to one another more in depth on the topic.

“Is there anything to do other than just talk?” Maria asked.

“Like what? We have plenty of activities here.” Ricky responded.

“Like video games or something?” Maria asked.

“Oh, I actually develop games as my hobby.” Brent responded to Maria.

“You do!? That’s so cool!” Maria said with excitement.

“Yeah, I think they are pretty good, you’ve probably played a few of my games if you are into the gaming scene.” Brent said to Maria. “I made Western Warriors RPG, Soul Reapers, Radioactive Chicken…” Brent was saying before Maria interrupted.

“You made Soul Reapers!? That’s like one of my favourite games.” Maria responded.

“Yeah, I actually made the entire thing in that room.” Brent pointed to a room in the back. “Do you want to see?” Brent asked Maria.

“That would be so cool!” Maria responded. Brent then led Maria to his developers room.

The walls of the room had sound dampeners. He had several high performance computers, and it was filled with consoles and TVs.

Maria looked around the room in awe.

Back in the dorms.

The boys were playing DDR. They were taking turns competing to see who could get the high scores.

Ventus went to Aiden who looked like he was bored in the back.

“Why aren’t you joining the fun? Missing your best friend?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“No, I just don’t find enjoyment in any of this stuff.” Aiden responded.

“What do you enjoy doing?” Ventus asked.

“That’s an interesting question. I don’t actually know myself. I suppose making stuff for Maria.” Aiden responded as he thought about the question for a short while.

“You make stuff? That’s pretty neat. Have I seen anything you made?” Ventus asked Aiden, as he drank a bit more fruit punch.

The guys then cheered loudly as Gary just broke Jerry’s High Score.

“I bet you’d be amazing at that!” Ventus said to Aiden.

“I’d probably get a perfect score.” Aiden responded as if that was a matter of fact.

Ventus then laughed. Aiden looked over at Ventus then smirked. 

“How about we go one round against each other. I think I’m pretty good too.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“I suppose one round against you wouldn’t hurt.” Aiden said, starting to walk to the DDR Machine.

Ventus then paused suddenly. He started staring at the wall, and became furious. The entire atmosphere of the party changed as Ventus went from being a host to seeming like he wanted to kill someone.

Ventus then ran out of the dorms at a full sprint.

The guys at the party were confused about what just happened.

“Well that was scary.” Paul remarked. “Maybe he’s bipolar?” Paul attempted to try and guess why Ventus would suddenly act like that unprovoked.

The guys then brought out a few laser guns.

“Hey, how about we see how good our aim is after a month?” Keith said, holding a blue laser gun.

David handed the guys some vests, and they were separated out into teams. David went to Aiden and gestured, trying to give him a Blue vest.

Aiden took it to David’s surprise.

“Awesome, now let’s say that outside the dorms are off limits, other than that it’s where you want.” Keith said, turning down the lights.

On the Red Team were Richard, Abraham, David, Antonio, Paul and Gary. On the Blue Team were Jerry, John, Keith, Steve, Steven, and Aiden.

David looked around at his team. “How come all the short guys are on my team.” He asked.

“Shut up, you’re only 160 centimeters.” Paul responded.

“I’m 162 centimeters, thank you very much.” David responded to Paul.

“No, we are the same height, that makes you 160.” Paul reaffirmed.

“Okay, let’s start. The team with the most points in 15 minutes wins.” Keith said getting a quick shot on Gary.

Aiden then walked over to a pillar in the room and shot people from there.

Back at the Senior’s Homecoming Party.

Maria was looking at the consoles on the walls. “I’ve never seen this one before, where’s it from?” Maria asked, pointing at a power glove.

“Oh yeah, that’s from like the 80s, my dad got it when he went to Japan for work. It didn’t sell well. But he got one before it was discontinued. That’s the first edition, so it’s pretty rare.” Brent gloated about the item.

Maria then looked around. Brent stared at Maria as she was looking at the stuff. She started feeling weird having him stare at her.

“So, do you want to play one of these retro games?” He asked Maria.

Maria wanted to break the awkward feeling, so she accepted.

They both then sat on his bed and he handed her a controller. “This is Legend of Hector, you just have to rescue the Prison at Level 9.” Brent said to Maria.

Maria started moving the joystick and tried to get the character to attack.

“Oh, let me help you out.” Brent said, holding Maria’s hands on the controller.

Maria pulled away her hands. “No thank you. I can figure it out.” Maria responded.

They then sat in silence for a second.

“Has a guy never touched you before?” Brent asked Maria.

Maria was creeped out. “What kind of question is that?” Maria responded quickly.

“Well you pulled away when I was just trying to be nice. It seems like we had good chemistry.” Brent said to Maria.

“All I wanted to do was look at how you made games, there was no chemistry.” Maria responded.

“Come on, there had to be a little chemistry there. Why else would you come to a guy’s room alone? I can show you.” Brent said to Maria trying to hold her hand.

Maria put down the controller. “You know what, I’m uncomfortable. I’m going to leave.” Maria responded by standing up.

Brent grabbed Maria’s hand. “Why are you being such a tease, you obviously knew what you wanted when you came in here. If you leave now it’s going to be embarrassing for me.” Brent said to Maria.

“Let go of me right now.” Maria said, trying to stay calm.

“No, I just want to show you a good time. Why are you making me out to be the bad guy?” Brent responded.

“I said let go!” Maria yelled out. Brent then tried to pull Maria down.

She punched him in the face and tried to run out the room, but it seemed to have been blocked from the outside. She started kicking it.

“Get off the door!” Maria yelled out.

“You freaking prude, I wanted to make this a happy moment, but you’re making it difficult.” Brent said, grabbing Maria again.

She tried hitting him again, but Seniors are more trained in martial arts then freshmen, so he was able to catch it. He used his superior weight to throw Maria.

Because the room was designed to be soundproof for recording, no one was able to hear Maria yell out.

Brent laid on top of Maria and tried to kiss her.

“Just calm down.” Brent said.

“No! I don’t want my first time to be with you!” Maria yelled at him.

Then there was banging happening outside.

Ventus ran into the Off Campus House. He pointed at Silvia. “You find the rest of the girls and group up together at the front.” Ventus commanded Silvia with anger in his eyes.

Silvia was frightened by Ventus’ appearance and immediately went to get the other girls.

Ventus then punched the guys who were blocking the door to the room Maria and Brent were in. He dislocated one of the guy’s jaw and shoved the other to the ground. He then kicked in the door and immediately tackled Brent.

Ventus rolled on the ground with him as he continued to punch him in the face. The other guys then started to rush into the room. 

Maria quickly ran out and joined with the other girls at the party. She was distraught and ran out of the house. The other girls followed behind.

“What about Ventus?” Silvia asked.

But no one responded. They were focused on getting back to the dorms.

The guys in the dorms were busy playing laser tag when the girls returned in exhaustion.

“What happened?” Keith asked.

“I don’t know, Ventus just ran in there and just started fighting.” Zofia said, trying to catch her breath.

“Knew he was a little crazy, no one is happy all the time.” Paul responded.

Aiden then went to Maria. “Do you know what happened?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Let’s not talk about it right now.” Maria responded to Aiden.

Sirens from the campus police were heard from outside.

“Wow, looks like he really ruined it over there.” Paul added.

Maria then decided to go up the elevator without saying a word.

Aiden then quickly followed behind her.

“Well, if you guys still want to party we have a few more vests, and plenty of punch.” Keith said, trying to get the girls to join in.

“Sure.” Joyce said, grabbing a gun and vest. The other girls then also grabbed a few.

Maria laid in her bed. “Something wrong?” Aiden asked Maria.

“I’m tired. I just want to go to sleep.” Maria responded.

“Are you upset that Ventus ruined your Homecoming party?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Shut Up! Just leave!” Maria yelled out at Aiden.

Aiden was silent for a moment. “My apologies.” Aiden said to Maria.

“You don’t even know what you are supposed to be apologizing for. Just leave, I want to go to sleep.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then left the room.

Aiden went into Room 888 and stood at his desk. He looked at the wall that Ventus usually stared at.

“There’s nothing there.” Aiden thought to himself.

A few hours passed and the freshman started making their way back to the rooms and to bed.

Silvia sat down waiting downstairs for Ventus to return but he never did.

Silvia woke up at 3am, she noticed that she fell asleep on one of the couches in the recreation area. All the other students had already gone to sleep. The only person awake was the Dorm’s Night Watch.

“Did Ventus return?” Silvia asked, feeling a bit groggy.

“No, no one entered the building after you all returned.” He said to Silvia.

“Okay.” Silvia responded as she then also went to bed. She entered the pitched black room where Maria was already asleep. Silvia then changed into her sleeping clothes and also passed out.

The weekend was uneventful after that. Silvia tried to figure out what happened. And Aiden walked silently because Maria did not want to talk to him.

Aiden was also curious as to what happened because Ventus never returned to the room.

There was gossip happening downstairs.

“Did you guys hear? Ventus beat like 7 guys half to death.” Richard said to the other freshmen sitting in the recreation room.

“Why’d he do that?” Steve asked.

Tammy had a feeling about what happened that night and started to feel upset with the thought that her club partners at the institute tried to assist in getting one of them taken advantage of.

“He probably had a good reason.” Tammy responded.

“There’s no good reason to beat people half to death.” Jerry responded.

“Just use your brains a little, sheesh.” Tammy responded with some anger.

After Maria heard the news she wanted to go to the Campus Police Station.

Aiden decided to go with Maria there. Once they arrived.

“Is Ventus Marcos here?” Maria asked.

“Are you filing a charge on him too?” The police officer asked.

“No, I just want to talk to him.” Maria responded.

“He’s being expelled. He can’t have any visitors.” The police officer responded.

“Expelled! But he didn’t do anything wrong!” Maria yelled out.

“Don’t you know that he was involved in several assault cases.” The Police Officer said to Maria. “Against Seniors nonetheless.” The Police Officer added.

“He had a good reason, I was there.” Maria responded.

“Then file a statement and we will look into it.” The Police Officer said to Maria, handing her the paper.

Maria angrily grabbed it.

“What reason did he have to beat those people?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Well since you can’t figure it out. That night one of those disgusting guys tried to have his way with me, and his friends locked the door from the outside. But Ventus broke in and started fighting, letting me out.” Maria said to Aiden with an attitude that she had to explain it to him.

“Oh, so that’s what happened.” Aiden responded.

“Is that all you can say about it?” Maria asked.

“Well you aren’t hurt, and with your statement the situation should be resolved.” Aiden said to Maria.

“After I turn this in, you get me in to talk to Ventus.” Maria commanded Aiden.

“Sure.” Aiden responded.

Maria handed in her statement and the Police Officer read it. “And all of this is factual and the truth?” The Police Officer asked.

“Yes, that’s exactly how it went down.” Maria responded.

“Then we will add this to the case.” The Police Officer said.

Maria and Aiden then walked outside.

They both walked to the back of the building into the otherside of the wall that Ventus was being held in.

Aiden carved a hole into the cell, so that Maria could talk with Ventus.

Ventus sat on the bench in the cell with his head in his hands.

“Hey.” Maria whispered trying to get Ventus’ attention.

He looked over to where the sound was. He noticed the hole and moved over to it.

“Is that you Maria?” Ventus asked.

“Yeah, it’s me!” Maria responded.

“That’s great, I’m happy you made it out safely. I’m also happy that I made it in time. I really had to sprint the fastest I could to make it there before something much worse happened.” Ventus said to Maria.

“How’d you know that I was in trouble?” Maria asked.

“I see things, and the events that I saw if I didn’t act were unspeakable. It made me furious. So I had to make sure it didn’t happen.” Ventus responded.

The Police Officer then started walking over to the holding cell that Ventus was in.

“We have to talk about that later. We are going to make sure you don’t get expelled.” Maria said to Ventus.

“I know you will.” Ventus responded. Aiden then sealed the wall.

“We need to figure out when the trial is supposed to happen.” Maria said to Aiden.

“That shouldn’t be too difficult. We can just ask the Officer.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Yeah, let’s see!” Maria then ran back to the entrance of the building. She placed both of her hands on the desk.

“So when is his trial supposed to be!?” Maria asked the Police Officer.

“A trial? I’m pretty sure the dean already decided on the situation. I already said that I would add your statement to the case. All you can do now is wait.” The Police Officer said to Maria.

“So that’s really it? I can’t help anymore?” Maria asks.

“No, once you submit your statement that is all that could be done. The case might reopen before his punishment is finalized, or it may not. That depends on the Dean.” The Police Officer responded to Maria.

With Maria’s hands tied she spent that day trying to think about how she could help Ventus out.

The next school day started. And as announced it was time for the class elections.

On the ballots Ventus’ name was removed from the Class President spot. Maria held up a pencil and looked for his name.

Maria went up to Miss Creed.

“Why isn’t Ventus’ name on the Ballots?” Maria asked.

“Students of Negative Behaviour are ineligible to run for Class Office.” Miss Creed said to Maria.

“But his case isn’t finished. It’s unfair to remove him before it’s resolved.” Maria said loudly to Miss Creed.

“At the incident several Seniors were nearly beaten to death, and all of their stories paint the same picture. It was resolved before it was even opened.” Miss Creed said to Maria.

“But-” Maria started saying before Miss Creed interrupted her.

“Nothing you could say will get his name back on the Ballots, just vote on those which are present.” Miss Creed said, pointing to Maria’s seat.

Maria reluctantly sat down and filled out the ballot.

She selected Gary Khan for Treasurer, and herself for Public Relations. Maria wrote Ventus’ name for President despite there being no place for it.

Aiden voted for Zofia Johns, Rebecca Burns and Maria Li. And Silvia left the spot for President Blank and voted for Gary Khan, and Joyce Smith.

When all ballots were in, the votes were tallied.

For the Freshmen Class President was Zofia Johns. For Vice President was the Runner Up, Tammy Crabtree. For Treasurer was Gary Khan, and for Public Relations Joyce Smith.

“That election was stupid.” Maria remarked. “Everyone knows who the real President was supposed to be. They all should be more upset.” Maria thought to herself.

But despite this the vote stood and the direction of the Freshmen year was decided.

Zofia Johns came up to the front of the class to make her acceptance speech.

“Good morning my fellow classmate, it is I, your new Class President, Zofia Johns. Thank you all for electing me to this executive office. I will meet all of your expectations of me, and will lead our class to a bright future. Of course I will need your continued support to ensure this is the best year possible. I look forward to working with our new Treasure, Gary Khan, our new Public Relations Chair, Joyce Smith and my Vice President Tammy Crabtree. I promise that I will behave in a manner befitting of this office.” Zofia said, finishing off her speech.

The class then clapped as Zofia took her seat.

“After class today all those who have been elected are to meet me at my office.” Miss Creed told the students.

Miss Creed then started the material for the day.

Silvia looked around and noticed that Ventus was still not in class.

“I guess he’s really gone.” Silvia thought to herself.

Maria sat in her chair upset at the results, and at the speech that Zofia gave. She felt like she would have given a much better one.

A few more days passed and still Ventus was not in class. However, there was a knock on the classroom door. Summoning Maria, Silvia and Rebecca to the dean’s office.

The girls looked at each other and received permission to leave class.

They were escorted to the Dean’s Office.

“Have a seat, you three.” The Dean said to the girls.

They all sat down.

He had papers on his desk. He then placed his hands on his chin, with his fingers interlaced.

“You three have submitted Police Reports which run counter to the current narrative dealing with your classmate Ventus Marcos. Are you willing to be a witness in his case if I reopened it?” The Dean asked.

The three looked at one another. They would have to be present in front of faculty members, and the Upperclassmen involved.  Their faces would be in the light for all to see. This freshman year really took a negative turn.

Angel Misery 2: Chapter Two

Introduction of Geniuses

Summer Vacation on Campus ended and every student prepared themselves for the first day of school. Maria packed up her backpack full of stationery items, Silvia followed behind Maria as they both went down the elevator to meet up with Aiden.

“The break flew by quickly!” Maria said feeling unsatisfied with having to already go to school.

“It was a lot more eventful than Summer of last year. I would have thought you got your fill.” Aiden responded.

“That’s the issue, because it was so fun, I didn’t want it to end already.” Maria responded.

“It was pretty fun, but I am also glad that it’s time to get back to work. I’ve been feeling a bit nervous about the workload we will be given at this school. The other students were indeed rather intelligent.” Silvia said to them.

During the break a few more students joined up, making the total number of Freshmen that year 22 Students. They all sat in a lab room at assigned desks.

Maria looked around, the other students all seemed to be taking the first day of school extremely seriously. All were facing forward. Then the Home Room teacher walked in.

“Everyone stand up.” The Teacher said walking in. All the students stood up. The Teacher looked at them, measuring the students’ focus with their eyes. “Morning to you all, and congratulations on making it this far. I am the first face you will see every morning at this school, your homeroom teacher, Miss Creed.” Miss Creed said, wearing a white lab coat and goggles. She wore black gloves which nearly went to her elbows.

“She’s intense.” Maria thought to herself.

“When I call your name, you are to tell me what your planned Concentration of Study is going to be. Then you are to sit down. Understood.” Miss Creed said, pulling up the list of names on her tablete.

“Rebecca Burns.” Miss Creed Started.

“Present, and I wanted to be a CEO of a fortune 500 company.” Rebecca responded then sat down.

“Joanne Coyce.”

“Present. I want to focus on Economics. Maybe one day become the Secretary of Commerce and clear out the National Debt.” Joanne said before sitting.

“Tammy Crabtree.”

“Here. I focus on Politics. More accurately interdisciplinary fields that are involved with Social, Economic, and Warfare.” Tammy said as she sat.

They each sat down feeling relieved that they made it past introductions.

“Richard Garrison.”

“Present. I want to concentrate on Architecture and Civil Engineering. So that I could innovate and modernize Infrastructure across the world.” Richard said, taking a seat.

“Aiden Heavens.”

Aiden looked over to Maria, then back at Miss Creed. “I’m present. And as for a Concentration, that’s left to be determined.” Aiden then sat down. Maria looked at Aiden as his answer was extremely boring.

“Zofia Johns.”

“That’s me, and I want to focus on Aerospace Engineering, so that I could build myself a plane fast enough to handle the speed I desire to travel.” Zofia said with gusto. She then sat down.

“Keith Johnson.”

“Present. I want to focus on Material Science. Lighter and stronger materials are what will shape the future.” Keith said, as he sat down.

“Gary Khan.”

“Present. I plan to continue dominating the Stock Market as I have already done. Besides that I suppose learning more ways to grow my money will be my target.” Gary said, as he took a seat.

“Maria Li.”

Maria cleared her throat. “I’m here! I want to Concentrate on Leadership and Strategies. Hard problems, things like that.” Maria said, sitting down feeling satisfied with her answer.

“John Lynn.”

“Present.” John then adjusted his glasses. “I want to Concentrate on Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence.” John then quickly sat down covering his head.

“Ventus Marcos.”

“Good Morning, I’m here. As for my Concentration I want to focus on Temporal Space. And probably a little bit of World Leadership, whichever comes first.” Ventus said, before he took his seat.

“Steve Martinez.”

“Present. My concentration is on Architecture.” Steve then sat down. He kept his sentences short.

“Steven Milligan.”

“Here. I want to be a Material Engineer. We can have all the theories and functions, but until someone actually builds it, then we aren’t going to get anywhere.” Steven seemed to have targeted Keith with that comment. He then sat down.

“Antonio Moore.”

“Present. My concentration is on the Ocular Sciences. More specifically the Repair and Augmenting of it.” Antonio said before sitting.

“Paul Nettleton.”

Paul shook his head and gave himself a smile. “Here! My Concentration is Psychiatric Aid.” Paul then looked at the rest of his classmates with a smile then he sat down. His smile then disappeared.

“Johnnie O’Conner.”

“Here, and my Concentration is on Politics. I look forward to studying with everyone.” Johnnie then sat down.

“Silvia Reiners.”

Silvia adjusted herself. “Present. My focus is going to be on Genetic Science, also the augmenting of it.” Silvia said before sitting down. She tried to look serious but with all the eyes of other intelligent students looking at her made her get the feeling she didn’t belong.

“Abraham Schubert.”

“Here. And I also want to concentrate on Material Engineering.” Abraham said before he sat down.

“David Shannon.”

“Here, not sure how though. I just want to build stuff and work on cars.” David said lazily sitting down.

“Joyce Smith.”

“Present. My concentration is on Fluid Dynamics and Aviation.” Joyce said before she tilted her head, then sat down.

“Jerry Terrell.”

“Here. My concentration is on being a Bone Doctor.” Jerry said with a smile. But no one laughed. “Ouch, tough crowd. I want to be an Oestheo Physician.” Jerry said before he sat down.

“Luetta Todd.”

“Here. And I want to Concentrate on vehicle engineering. Probably in the range of Mechanical Engineering I suppose.” Luetta said being the last one to take her seat.

Miss Creed checked off everyone and looked rather disappointed in the line-up.

“Very well, it seems we are lacking in the Scientist department. But that doesn’t matter too much, since you all are freshmen your concentration won’t matter. Though it is nice to keep in the back of your mind.” Miss Creed put away her tablet. She then turned around to the board and started writing.

She was filling the board with numbers, and diagrams. “The components of our Universe can be explained through a few fundamental equations. These are the wave functions and assist with determining the potential locations of Elementary Particles according to the standard model.” Miss Creed started speaking.

The students in the class then quickly brought out their notes after being caught off guard with the sudden beginning of class.

Maria brought out her Graphing Calculator and different colour pens to take colourful notes. She received advice from Zofia about how to take good and memorable notes.

Aiden kept up with the work, not missing a single word that Miss Creed said.

This pace kept up for a few hours with only short 15 minute breaks in between each lesson.

Maria looked up at the clock waiting for lunch time to come. It was still 30 minutes away.

“My hands are on fire…” Maria thought to herself as Miss Creed continued to write more information on the board.

Miss Creed then turned around. “Now everyone, take out a blank piece of paper.” Miss Creed told the class. She then flipped the board revealing a problem.

“Write as many Fermi Diagrams that would describe this interaction.” The board said. It then had an image of an Electron then a box, then the release of a photon.

“When you are finished, hand in your paper and you can go to lunch.” Miss Creed said, sitting at her desk.

The class was stunned. They were already having a quiz on what they learned.

Maria looked at the blank paper, and her mind went just as blank as it. She pressed her pen against the sheet. “Okay, I got this…” Maria thought to herself as she started writing.

Silvia felt overwhelmed with not being given enough time to perfect her knowledge on the subject. As a perfectionist she was terrified of not getting a perfect grade, and thus was unable to write anything she wasn’t certain about.

Aiden got up from his seat and walked past Maria. He was trying to show Maria the answers.

Maria pushed Aiden forward, declining to cheat on this quiz. Aiden then turned in his paper and waited in the hall.

Not even a few minutes later several students also turned in their papers and headed to lunch.

“Seems that they are pretty smart.” Aiden thought to himself watching his classmates leave the classroom. Aiden continued to wait for Maria.

Ventus walked out of the classroom. “Wow Angeal, you were the first one to turn in your paper. I couldn’t do that ha, I would be afraid of making everyone else feel nervous.” Ventus continued down the hall.

Maria soon came out as well. She had a smile on her face. “I think I did pretty good on that!” Maria said to Aiden.

“You must have been confident, you didn’t even want to look at my answers.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, it wasn’t that hard, there wasn’t even really a certain amount of correct answers. I think she just wanted to see how creative we could get with the diagrams.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“What do you mean? There are only a few interactions that could result in an Electron releasing a Photon.” Aiden said to Maria.

“No, not really. Because within the box could be a positron, which most people would get. Or it could be a Positron, a virtual negative down quark and a virtual down quark. Or it could be several photons that get absorbed by the electron, then a Neutron could decay. There are just so many ways to draw it.” Maria said to Aiden.

“You may have deviated from the assignment.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Guess we have to see.” Maria laughed.

Silvia then came out. She was one of the last students to leave the classroom. “That was stressful.” Silvia said to the two.

“Why’s that? I didn’t think it was hard at all.” Maria said to Silvia.

“Because the question was so vague. I wasn’t sure what was supposed to be the correct answer, I didn’t have time to read over my notes before the quiz, everyone was leaving. It just wasn’t…” Silvia then exhaled. “I’m hungry.” She said bending down.

“I’m sure you did well, SIlvia.” Aiden said to her.

“I sure hope so.” Silvia responded.

The group then headed down to the Dining Hall. There were tables filled with Seniors, Juniors and Sophomores. The Freshmen ate furthest away from the food stands.

Aiden grabbed himself some water, and Maria got herself some Pizza.

They both sat down and Silvia tried to join them.

“No way, this is my only time away from you.” Maria said to Silvia trying to keep her from sitting.

“Really? You’re going to be like this? Just let me sit down, I’m friends with Angeal too.” Silvia said, trying to sit.

Ventus then came to the table. He then sat down next to Aiden.

“So how’d you think you did?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“I think I did pretty well.” Aiden responded then he proceeded to ignore Ventus.

Ventus then looked over at Silvia. “Say, you said you wanted to do something with Genetic Engineering right? That’s a pretty serious field, I would love to have someone like you part of my future inner circle.” Ventus said to Silvia.

“I decline.” Silvia said to Ventus.

“Wow, so quickly. Why’s that?” Ventus asked Silvia.

“Because I don’t have any interest in working with you. You don’t seem like you would be able to keep up with me intellectually. Afterall you are going into a fake field.” Silvia responded.

“Temporal Science isn’t fake, it’s going to be what is needed to learn in the year 2024.” Ventus said to SIlvia.

“Sure it will. Now can you go somewhere else?” Silvia asked Ventus.

“Okay. I just figured since we are all sort of like roommates that it would be cool to sit together during lunch.” Ventus added.

Silvia then pointed. And Ventus left.

“Wow, that was really mean, Silvia.” Maria said to her. “Is that what it looks like from the outside?” Maria asked.

“Well you are trying to get rid of me despite me already having an established friendship with Angeal. We don’t even really know Ventus.” Silvia responded to Maria.

“Still felt pretty mean.” Maria said, she then stopped trying to kick Silvia off of their table.

“I already get enough of him when I am in my room, so I think it’s okay that he doesn’t spend time with us here.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Okay, I’ll go along with you on this.” Maria responded to Aiden. They all then started eating their food.

The second half of classes began.

Miss Creed handed back the quizzes to the students.

Maria was hesitant to look at her quiz which was upside down on the desk. But she built up the courage to look.

“90%. Indication of High use of Lateral Thinking. Moderate use of Vertical Thinking.” The quiz said. Maria pumped her fist with excitement.

Aiden looked at his quiz. “55%. There are several diagrams that you could have employed. Your answers are correct, but the lack of exploration indicates Low Lateral Thinking ability.” Aiden’s quiz said.

“A 55? But all my answers were correct, how could I have a failing grade?” Aiden thought to himself.

Silvia checked hers and she also didn’t do well. She got a 60 on her quiz. “I guess it could have been much worse.” Silvia thought to herself.

“Now that everyone has a chance to look at your grade, you can toss them since they aren’t going to be a part of your record. However, those quizzes will be similar to how quizzes will be from now on. In terms of difficulty and what I am looking for. We are teaching you to memorize information, we are teaching you to develop knowledge.” Miss Creed said to the class.

A great relief was released by the class. It showed that a good majority of the class didn’t do as well as they thought they would.

The first day of classes came to a close and the students were permitted to return to their dorms.

“Looks like I am the smartest one now!” Maria said to the group.

“That’s just an indication that it was a flawed way of grading, since obviously you aren’t smarter than the two of us.” Silvia responded to Maria.

“Sounds like someone is just feeling salty.” Maria mocked Silvia.

The two then bickered to one another.

Joyce then came up to the group. “Hey Silvia and Maria, a bunch of us girls want to check out the spa at this school, do you want to join us!?” Joyce asked Maria.

“A spa? Why?” Maria asked.

“You know, to just relax, and get your skin looking nice. Don’t worry, it’s next to the dorms.” Joyce said to Maria.

“Can Angeal come too?” Maria asked.

Joyce then looked up at Aiden. “Ah… no? He’s a guy right?” Joyce asked Maria.

“That doesn’t mean anything.” Maria responded.

“Yes it does. But anyways, if you don’t want to come, that’s okay.” Joyce said to Maria.

“I’ll go, I need some relaxation after today.” Silvia said to Joyce.

Joyce then looked at Maria. “And what about you?” Joyce asked.

“Sure, I’ll go with the girls. This is highschool afterall.” Maria responded. “I’ll see you later!” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden now walked alone to his room. He found Ventus in the room staring once again at the wall.

“What are you doing?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Nothing. Wow, looks like you are back early. Did everyone decide to do other stuff without you?” Ventus responded with the question.

“It was a girl’s only thing, so I couldn’t be a part of it.” Aiden then sat on his bed. “Why are you always here alone? Don’t you hang out with people?” Aiden asked.

“I do, but sometimes I just need to recharge a bit.” Ventus responded.

Aiden then looked over at Ventus. “Hey, I have a question for you.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“I might have an answer.” Ventus responded.

“Are you Vanoe?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Vanoe? Who’s that?” Ventus responded.

“Are you an aspect of the Winds?” Aiden asked another question.

“An aspect of the Winds? Oh, because my name is Ventus. That’s fun wordplay, but I don’t know what that means.” Ventus responded. “Who’s Vanoe?”

“He’s a person that I met back when I went to the Olympics last year. I just wasn’t sure if you were just pretending not to know me. But you sound genuine in not having any idea of what I am talking about.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“You went to the Olympics? That’s pretty awesome, I wish I could have gone. I loved watching it on TV.” Ventus told Aiden. “If you thought I was Vanoe, he must be a pretty cool dude.” Ventus laughed.

“Well, he was pretty impressive.” Aiden responded to Ventus. They both then sat in silence for a bit.

“Well if you are curious about my origin, would you believe me if I said I was an Alien?” Ventus looked over at Aiden.

Aiden then turned to look at Ventus. “No, I wouldn’t believe you. Your body is much too Human.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Ha, maybe. If only you could see what I see.” Ventus said with a lower voice.

“So, are you going to tell me what you know, that I don’t know you know?” Aiden asked Ventus.

Ventus then rubbed his chin. “Hmm, is it time for me to reveal it.” Ventus said to himself. Ventus then looked over at Aiden, and stared at him a bit. Then he looked back over at the wall. “Okay, I will give you a little hint.” Ventus said to Aiden.

Aiden looked unamused.

“It deals with where you are from.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“There’s no way he would know I’m from the heavenly realm. He’s obviously acting like he knows more than he actually does.” Aiden thought to himself. “Where do you think that is?” Aiden asked.

“I just gave you a hint, I can’t spill the beans on it.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“Everyone already knows I’m from Sequoia.” Aiden said to Ventus.

Ventus then laughed. “Not even close!” Ventus said to Aiden. He then continued to laugh amused that Aiden was trying to fool him.

“Then where does he think I’m from?” Aiden thought to himself. “Just say where you think, I don’t want to guess.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Aw, that’s no fun. But it isn’t time for me to say, the Universe is saying to wait a bit longer.” Ventus responded to Aiden as he laid on his bed.

“The Universe, well this guy doesn’t have any clue about any of that.” Aiden thought to himself.

Ventus started singing a song about Greek Gods.

Aiden became suspicious of Ventus.

The girls returned from their spa day, and Maria knocked on the door to Room 888.

“I’m back Angeal!” Maria said outside the door.

“I know.” Aiden said to Maria. Maria then looked inside the room and saw Ventus sitting on the bed. Ventus waved at Maria. 

“Hello Maria!” Ventus said to her.

“Hey hey!” Maria responded with a smile.

“Okay, let’s head over to your room.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Why the rush? I want to talk to Ventus a little.” Maria said.

“I think there is more to him than he is letting out. I don’t want us to give anymore information.” Aiden said to Maria in a low volume.

“Oh, he creeped you out?” Maria laughed quietly.

They both started walking away from the room.

“I think he knows that I am from the Heavenly Realm.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria was surprised. “How would he know that? Has he been there before?” Maria asked Aiden, shocked that Aiden would think someone actually would know that.

“He didn’t believe that I was from Sequoia, and he began to sing a song about Greek Gods. Putting those two together would get me to that conclusion.” Aiden explained to her.

“How would he know that though?” Maria asked.

“I don’t know. Maybe he is looking at something when he stares at that wall.” Aiden said to Maria.

“You should stare at that wall later, see what is hidden in there.” Maria joked with Aiden.

They both entered Room 808 and began playing cards as Silvia sat at her desk studying the material that they learned today.

“Are you really not going to study for tomorrow? What if we have another pop quiz?” SIlvia asked Maria.

Maria placed her cards on the floor, revealing that she had a full house. Aiden revealed that he had a 4 of a kind.

“I think I am in good shape, after all, I did get a 90 on the latest quiz.” Maria said, reminding Silvia of her score.

“You aren’t ever going to stop bringing that up, it’s as if you’ve never gotten a 90 before.” Silvia remarked.

“I have, but I am just savouring the delicious taste of beating you in academics.” Maria teased Silvia.

The next school day started.

The freshmen class woke up bright and early to get to their home room. Miss Creed walked into the classroom with a syllabus. She handed it to the students seated in front. They handed the pages to the students behind them.

“Yesterday we went over how STEM classes were going to be held. But as you can see you will also be tested on your Physical Achievements through Quarterly Physical Fitness tests, Biyearly Weapons’ Proficiency Tests, and Interpersonal Relations Exams.” Miss Creed explained to the class.

Maria looked at the syllabus. She saw that the weapons’ classes were going to teach them how to shoot various rifles and handguns. “So cool!” Maria thought to herself.

“After the first assessments a class President will be chosen to represent your class to the Dean of the school. Resources for independent research and club funding will be determined by how valuable the Dean deems your class’ products. Also on the syllabus is a list of extracurricular activities, or clubs, whichever you want to name them. Participating in these clubs will also help your class with acquiring funding.” Miss Creed continued to explain.

Miss Creed gave the students a few minutes to look over the papers that were handed to them.

“Now I want everyone to pay attention to today’s weapon’s safety class.” Miss Creed said, pulling up a diagram of a M16 service rifle.

The students then rushed again to pull out a blank sheet of paper to write notes. They weren’t given the opportunity to ask any questions.

“These are the 4 Weapons Safety Principles. 1: Treat every weapon as if it were loaded. 2: Never point your weapon at anything you do not intend to shoot. 3: Keep your finger straight and off the trigger until you are ready to fire. 4: Keep your weapon on ‘safe’ until you intend to shoot.” Miss Creed said, reading off the list. “Now repeat those Principles back.” She ordered.

The students then repeated the rules back to Miss Creed. She then had them repeat it again and they did.

“And the fifth safety rule. ‘Know your target and what lies beyond.’ So don’t shoot at anything if what is behind them is something you do not want to hit.” Miss Creed added to them.

Miss Creed pulled up a diagram of a rifle. She showed them the bolt, driving handle, barrel, and so on. She wanted to drill into them how they would be taking care of their weapons once they are issued them.

After several hours of continuous drilling of information, the students were given a short reprieve to ask questions.

Tammy raised her hand and was called on. “Why are we learning how to use weapons? I thought we were supposed to focus on academics.” Tammy asked Miss Creed.

“This school is developing you to be the top people in your field, and some of you may even go on to be Presidents, Generals, and CEOs, all potential targets for aggressors. We are preparing you to be able to protect yourself if it comes to that. If you intend not to take that top position then maybe you should reconsider your enrollment Miss Johnson.” Miss Creed said to Tammy.

The class was silent for a moment.

Ventus raised his hand. “During these weapon classes would we be allowed to augment our personal weapons?” Ventus asked Miss Creed.

“After you’ve shown mastery of your weapon handling, then you would be permitted to augment your weapons. That would likely be when you are Juniors.” Miss Creed responded. Miss Creed looked around. “Any more questions?”

None of the students answered.

“Then head outside and you are going to be assigned rifles for your courses.” Miss Creed told the students.

After the students were assigned rifles by scanning their student card with the barcode of the weapon, they were allowed to hold the weapons.

“Whoa, Aiden! Can you believe it!? I have a real gun now!” Maria said with excitement.

“Hey! Don’t wave it around. Remember the first and second principle.” Silvia said to Maria, grabbing her arm.

“It’s not like there’s bullets in here.” Maria responded to Silvia.

“The first principle literally tells you to treat it like it’s always loaded.” Silvia reminded Maria.

Maria then lowered her weapon. “I just can’t wait to shoot these.” Maria said. Maria adjusted the buttstock of her M4.

The armour told the students to put their weapons away and to head to lunch.

The students did just that and left the Armoury.

Maria grabbed a plate of Lasagna with garlic bread and a salad. She sat down at the table with Aiden and handed him her salad.

“I’m getting excited now, can you believe they are actually going to teach us to shoot people. I am going to graduate as an elite sniper or something.” Maria told Aiden.

Silvia then sat at the table. She was eating a Chicken Wrap, with a side of celery. “You would enjoy that.” Silvia said, responding to Maria’s excitement about weapons.

“And you’re not? How could you find guns boring?” Maria asked Silvia.

“I don’t think weapons are boring, I just don’t want to have to shoot anyone. I’m sure I would have bodyguards to handle that for me.” Silvia responded. “What do you think about the weapon classes?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“They seem like a valuable knowledge point in those edge cases where you would find yourself in a situation that required the use of a weapon. Though in my case, it’s practically redundant.” Aiden responded.

“You probably wouldn’t ever find yourself in a situation like that, right?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“Of course he wouldn’t, even if he did he could probably just blow them up with his mind.” Maria touched her fingers on her temples.

Aiden just looked at Maria with his unchanging expression.

“What clubs are you thinking of joining? It seems that it’s going to impact our High School experience a lot.” Silvia asked the two. “I think I am interested in the Biochemical Research Institute.” Silvia added.

“I haven’t given it much thought yet, and whatever club I join, Angeal is going to join too.” Maria responded.

“Angeal, did you give it any thought?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“I have not. Though I would recommend that we join the Organizational Government Institute if you are planning to control a large number of people.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria brought out her paper.

“Wow, there are a lot of clubs here. The Robotics Lab seems pretty cool!” Maria said.

“You’re into Robots?” Silvia questioned Maria.

“Who isn’t. Didn’t you watch those Robot uprising Movies. I want to build one of those.” Maria responded.

“And you would probably be the reason the World ends because of it.” Silvia joked with Maria.

The group continued to talk throughout lunch.

The second half of the day, the students were to put on their workout uniform and prepare for a run around the school.

Maria and Silvia came out of their room.

Silvia then started to stretch as they waited for Aiden.

“How long is this run supposed to be?” Maria asked Silvia.

“It’s a 5 Kilometer run, so it shouldn’t be so bad.” Silvia responded.

“5 Kilometers, I don’t think I’ve ever ran that far.” Maria responded by lifting her knees. Silvia looked at Maria confused.

“Weren’t you the tomboy of the school? How have you not run a 5 Kilometer track?” Silvia asked Maria.

“Because I always want to go somewhere when I run, I don’t run just to do it. That’s stupid.” Maria responded.

“Well, you are going to have a rough time today then.” Silvia responded.

Aiden then met up with them. Ventus followed behind Aiden.

“Hello guys!” Ventus said, waving his hand with a smile.

Maria waved back with a smile. Silvia ignored him.

“Okay, I grouped up with them, you can leave now.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Oh, I was hoping that we all could go down together. Maybe run in a group?” Ventus responded.

“Sorry Ventus, I would have loved to, but it seems they don’t really like you.” Maria said to Ventus.

“Okay, then see you in class, during the run then.” Ventus left, still with a smile on his face. It seems his feelings were a bit hurt, but he didn’t show that.

The students lined up on the field.

“Today will be your initial physical screening. Try to keep up with the group. Finishing 5 minutes after the Leader will be an automatic failure.” The teacher, Mr Hawks, said to the Freshmen.

“5 Minutes, that shouldn’t be so hard.” Maria thought to herself.

“Today, I will be the Leader. And one of you students will hold your class colours.” Mr Hawks said to the students.

He held out the flag waiting for someone to step up. Ventus stepped up to carry the flag. “I don’t mind doing it.” Ventus said. Mr Hawks handed Ventus the flag.

Mr Hawks led the students in dynamic stretches. Maria was already becoming exhausted from it. “I should not have eaten so much.” Maria thought to herself.

The students then began to run.

Zofia, Antonio, Keith, and Joyce quickly got in the front and led the main pack of the class. Ventus and Mr Hawks were in the front setting the pace.

Silvia quickly passed Maria. “You are going to need to pick up the pace or else you are going to fail.” Silvia said to Maria.

“Don’t worry about me, I’ll catch up.” Maria said already struggling. Aiden ran beside Maria.

John, Abraham, Joanne, and Johnnie were the only ones behind Maria.

After passing the 1 kilometer mark, Maria was already about 2 minutes behind the leader.

“Oh wow, I am getting tired.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Want me to assist you?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Sure, just have, like an invisible hand, help me move faster.” Maria commanded Aiden.

Aiden then constructed that. And Maria’s pace picked up a bit. 

The students in the front started singing as they ran to keep up their motivation. Ventus waved the flag high so that the students in the back could see how  far they were.

Even with Aiden’s assistance Maria was still about 3 minutes behind. They were now at the 3 Kilometer mark. Maria felt like she had been running forever.

“You’re more than halfway there, just keep your breathing up.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Are you even still helping me?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Yes I am.” Aiden responded. He then showed Maria by taking away the assistance. Maria then slowed way down.

“Okay, keep helping.” Maria said to Aiden.

The pair continued to run. About 30 minutes passed and the runners in the front finished the run. They rested drinking water that was at the finish line.

Maria was about 4 minutes behind. But she felt like her chest started cramping. 

“Oh wow, this is hard.” Maria said to Aiden.

“We can afford to slow down another minute.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria slowed down her pace.

Ventus ran past them the other way with the flag. He was heading to the back of the pack to cheer on the students who were far away in the back.

“Well, isn’t he just a ball of energy?” Maria said to herself.

“Come on guys, if you are behind me, then you are beyond the 5 minute cut off time. Just keep going, you’re almost there! Stay in front of me.” Ventus said as he went to the back.

Maria was only 100 meters away. She then used the rest of her energy to force herself to get a good time.

“Maria Li, 34 minutes and 12 seconds. Good job.” Mr Hawks said to Maria.

Maria fell on the ground trying to catch her breath. Silvia handed Maria some water.

“I’m surprised that you actually did it.” Silvia said, having looked as though she was fully rested.

“What time did you finish?” Maria asked Silvia.

“I finished in 31 minutes and 2 seconds. So not that bad.” Silvia responded to Maria.

Maria laid her head down.

“The air isn’t down there, you should sit up.” Zofia said to Maria.

Maria then sat up. “This doesn’t feel any better.” Maria responded.

The rest of the students crossed with barely any time remaining. Ventus crossed the line at 34 minutes and 55 seconds.

“Seems you all have passed. Go back to the field for our cool down stretches.” Mr Hawks told the students.

“I would have so failed if you didn’t help me.” Maria said to Aiden looking at the students who crossed after her.

“I think you are more fit than the students who came in last, so I don’t think you would have done that badly. I only slightly helped you.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Good work out there guys!” Ventus said, jogging past the other students.

He continued to hold the flag throughout the cooldown workouts.

Following the assessment the students were free to do whatever they wanted. They were supposed to use this time to figure out which clubs they wanted to join.

Silvia immediately went to the Biochemical Research Institute.

Aiden and Maria wandered around a bit.

When they were making their way around campus they saw some of the upperclassmen in the courtyard testing out some machines. Maria became interested in that.

“What club is this?!” Maria asked the guys who were testing.

“This isn’t a club, we are just having fun with some stuff we built. Are you a freshman?” They asked Maria.

“Yeah.” Maria responded. They then looked up at Aiden.

“Is he a freshman too?” They asked.

“Yes I am.” Aiden responded.

“So you guys must be looking for an institution. If you want to see what fits, just go to the school counselors and fill out a form of your interest. Then they should help you out on getting into the institution you want. It’s going to be hard for you if you are just walking around asking people if they are in a club.” They said to Maria.

“I guess that’s probably true.” Maria responded.

“Just go there, and fill out the form in the front.” The upperclassmen said, then they resumed playing with their equipment.

“Well I guess that’s where we are going.” Maria said to Aiden.

Maria and Aiden filled out the form and were given a list of institutions to join.

Maria was given a list consisting of: AI and Robotics Development Institute, the Institute for Military Leaders and Warfare, and the Human Augmentation Institute Focusing on Cybernetics.

Aiden was given a list consisting of: International Medicine Institute, Research of Medicine Institute, and Biochemical Research Institute.

“Hey, that;s the same one that Silvia was going to join!” Maria scolded Aiden.

“I didn’t do that on purpose, I just wrote that I wanted to assist you.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Sure you did.” Maria looked at Aiden suspiciously.

“I already said that I was going to join the one you joined, so whichever you choose.” Aiden told Maria.

Maria looked at her list.

The first month of school went very similar to this. The students were introduced to new concepts and given a crash course on various topics. Maria struggled a bit at first but eventually was able to catch up to speed with the other students. 

Maria finally decided that she was going to join the AI and Robotics Development Institute, in hopes that she could build an army of Robots to assist her in controlling the world.

“Looks like I’m going to become a Robotics Genius, Aiden!” Maria said to Aiden.

“We pretty much already have Golems for that, but nonetheless, I’m proud of you.” Aiden responded.

Angel Misery: Chapter Eighteen

“Goodbye Everyone”

The Sequoia State Junior High School’s End of the Real Rally was underway. The Principal of the school introduced the Top 5 ranking Middle Schoolers.

“That was a fine performance from the Marching Bands, now it’s time for the speeches from our Top 5 top scorers of the 7th Grade. We will begin with our 5th Top Scorer, Leanne Howard.” The Principal said moving out of the way to let Leanne take the stand.

“Thank you Principal.” Leanne said walking up with her paper.

“Whoa! You got this Leanne!” Maria yelled out from the stands.

Leanne stood up at the podium, looking out at her fellow schoolmates. She then cleared her throat.

“This has been an exciting year for us all. We made new friends, we are saying bye to old ones, but we must not forget the experiences we’ve gained from both…” Leanne was starting her speech.

Maria looked over at Aiden. “Wow, remember when we were up there giving our speeches. Felt like so long ago.” Maria said to Aiden, admiring how Leanne was keeping the mood high with her presentation.

“Yes, I do remember it. That was when I had to ruin the speeches of Joshua, Rebecca and Silvia.” Aiden reminded Maria.

“Oh yea, you did do that. And now look at you, trying to spend time with Silvia any chance you get.” Maria grimaced at Aiden.

“It’s definitely the other way around.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“So when we go to High School are you going to do the same thing?” Maria asked Aiden.

“I have no idea what events will happen during High School. So I can’t give you a clear answer on that.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“So to the 7th Graders, congratulations and I look forward to seeing you next year. And to the 8th Graders, congratulations on finding your High School. I will miss you, but I know we will see each other in the future. Have a great time!” Leanne said before stepping back and going to her seat.

The next student then began to speak.

“Aww, that was pretty sad.” Maria remarked.

“Well we have done a lot of things with Leanne since that ‘Beauty and the Beast’ play. Seeing us leave would definitely warrant a few emotions from her.” Aiden said, looking down at Leanne.

There were no crazy speeches like last year. And this year the Principal decided on just giving the 7th Graders the opportunity to speak. Likely because he remembered the speeches of the 7th Grade class last year.

“Those were all incredible.” The Principal said standing up onto the podium. 

The bands then played music for the transition.

“Now I will read off the names of every one of the 8th Grade graduates and the high Schools they will be attending.” The Principal said, grabbing the list of Students. “Attending Sequoia State High School we have Jeremy Atkins, Micheal Butcher, Andrew Conway, Courtney Cummings…” The Principal said as the students in the bleachers clapped after each high school list.

“Oh, our names are going to be mentioned together!” Maria said looking up at Aiden waiting for their School to be named.

It was near the end because the Principal wanted to end it off strong.

“And last but definitely not least, for the first time ever we have not one, not two, but three students going to The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders this year. They are Angeal Heavens, Maria Li, and Silvia Reiners.” The Principal said. 

The students clapped loudly that the list of schools were finally finished. 

“The King and Queen will stay together!” A student yelled out of the stands. They were of course talking about the pairing of Aiden and Silvia, not Aiden and Maria.

“Now let’s give one more round of applause to everyone this year.” The principal said, and the students clapped. “And now, with that. Have a good Summer, new 8th Graders and Good Luck and Happy Travels to our New High Schoolers!” The Principal said as the students in the stands stood up and clapped having been released for Summer Vacation.

Students walked around having each other sign their year books and their shirts. Everyone had happy faces on today.

Maria walked around with Aiden, as they looked at the field of the Middle School.

“Hello Angeal.” A student walked up to Aiden. Aiden turned around. “Could you sign my yearbook?” The student asked.

“Sure Teresa.” Aiden responded. Aiden grabbed the yearbook and signed it. “Have a great Summer.” Signed Aiden. Aiden wrote in the yearbook.

“Thank you so much!” Teresa said to Aiden. She then turned around to leave. Maria then stopped her.

“Hey, I haven’t signed your yearbook yet.” Maria said to Teresa.

“Oh you didn’t, sorry. I must have thought you did.” Teresa said, trying to come up with an excuse. Teresa handed Maria the yearbook.

“Bet you hate to see me go.” Maria signed in the yearbook. “There you are.” Maria said, handing back the book to Teresa. 

“Gee, thanks.” Teresa responded by leaving to go to another group of friends.

As time passed more students came asking Aiden to sign their yearbook, and were forced to let Maria sign it as well.

Eventually, after the shirt signing, students began to leave.

Maria and Aiden walked through the school.

Maria pointed at one of her old 7th Grade teacher’s rooms. “Ha, remember when we broke into the school to get the answers to the finals, but I ended up not being able to look at them anyways.” Maria laughed telling Aiden the story.

“Yes, and I had to go to the Teacher’s Lounge and change the answers for you. That placed you in the Top 5 of the school.” Aiden nodded his head.

“Oh, it’s Mr. Bowman’s room. Remember when his Kidney Stones flew all over the place, and that girl ran out of the classroom because some got stuck in her hair. That was pretty gross.” Maria laughed again thinking about the memory.

“Yes, Kayla was not having a good day.” Aiden also recalled the memory.

They both walked down the hallway and looked at the art pieces.

“I modeled for you in this image. I can’t believe they actually framed it.” Maria looked at the image that Aiden painted of Maria hanging in the Hallway.

“I didn’t do anything special. I just painted what I saw.” Aiden responded.

They heard footsteps following behind them.

It was Leanne trying to catch up with them in the empty school. She was trying to catch her breath.

“I saw Allison outside waiting, so I knew that you were still in the school.” Leanne said, pausing in between some words.

“Oh, did you need something?” Maria asked.

Leanne handed Maria her yearbook. “I don’t want you two to go and not sign my book. You guys were the first real friends I made in this school.” Leanne said.

“Then who am I to reject a plea from an underling of mine.” Maria laughed while signing Leanne’s book.

“Take over the school, and show them all your Power!” Maria signed.

“You are always so motivational, Maria.” Leanne said, handing the book up to Aiden.

“You would think it’s difficult but it’s almost second nature to me.” Maria laughed gloating about a talent she thought she had.

“Be who you are, because that’s the best person you can be.” Aiden wrote in Leanne’s Book.

“Ah, this is good. Because I’m an actress, but I have my own personality that I should show too. I get your meaning.” Leanne said to Aiden. “So what are you two going to do now that you graduated? Are you going to move soon?” Leanne asked Maria and Aiden.

“Well we will probably be here at least until my Birthday. Then we will be leaving in late July.” Maria said to Leanne.

“Aw, that’s not a lot of time at all. Can I come to your birthday?” Leanne asked Maria.

“Sure, I was going to invite you anyway, Angeal would have found you if I couldn’t.” Maria said to Leanne.

“Awesome! Then I look forward to that!” Leanne responded. She then walked with Maria and Aiden holding idle conversation, until they reached the theatre rooms.

“Okay, I will be splitting off from you guys here. I got some dresses I left in the lockers.” Leanne said before disappearing around the corner.

“She’s a nice girl.” Aiden said to Maria about Leanne. “If I never became your friend, I’m sure if you two had met, she would have.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I doubt we would have ever crossed paths if it weren’t for you. Before you became my best friend, school was just a place where I was just alone. I definitely would not have walked into the theatre rooms.” Maria responded to Aiden.

Aiden looked down at Maria. “I suppose you know better than I would what you would have done back then.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Last year, lunch time also sucked. I didn’t look forward to that at all. Now, not only do I get to eat whatever I want, other people look over at our table with envy. They even visit,  a little more than I like, but still they visit and sit at our table.” Maria said, thinking about how lunch was this year.

Allison then came into the building. “What is taking so long? Mom is waiting outside for you!” Allison said to Maria.

Allison looked and saw Aiden. “Oh, you were trying to spend as much time as possible with your boyfriend before you left.” Allison said, looking upset that Maria made her wait.

“Angeal isn’t my boyfriend!” Maria said to Allison. “Okay, see you, you know where.” Maria said to Aiden, as she followed Allison outside.

Aiden was now in the school on his own. He spent a little more time looking at all the things Humans did for learning. After this he walked to the back of the school. Several Students were waiting there for him.

“Heard that you usually go home from here, so wanted to make sure I got to you before we don’t see each other again.” A student said to Aiden. He handed Aiden his yearbook and Aiden signed it.

Some members of the marching band and dance teams got Aiden to sign their yearbook as well.

Eventually the crowd dispersed and Aiden was practically alone. But he noticed one person still watching.

Aiden turned around. “I know it’s you Kayla.” Aiden said towards a bush.

Kayla came out of the bushes blushing. “He… hello… dear…” Kayla struggled to say. She was holding a yearbook in her hand.

“Do you also want me to sign that for you?” Aiden asked Kayla.

Kayla’s face turned red and she pointed the book directly at Aiden.

Aiden grabbed the book from Kayla. “Don’t drop this one, okay.” Aiden wrote in Kayla’s book as a reminder of when she first said hello to him.

Kayla read it and hugged her yearbook.

“Well, if that’s everything, then I am going to leave.” Aiden said to Kayla.

“Wha…wha… wait, Ang… Angeal.” Kayla said, asking for Aiden to wait.

“Yes?” Aiden asked.

Kayla then cleared her throat. She was feeling hot. “I… I… Lov…” Kayla was trying to form the words she wanted to say but she was too nervous.

Aiden just stood waiting for her.

“I… love…” Kayla continued to repeat herself.

“What do you love?” Aiden asked Kayla, not recognizing she was trying to confess to him.

“You…” Kayla said very quietly.

“I didn’t quite get that. I heard you said ‘you’ but that’s probably incorrect.” Aiden said to Kayla.

Kayla puckered her lips in embarrassment and turned a deep red colour. She then took a note from her pocket and wrote in it quickly.

Kayla then ran off with her yearbook covering her face.

Aiden opened the note. It said ‘I love, really really like you Angeal.’ but the word love was crossed out.

Aiden read it and then folded it back up. “Very well. I think she was an interesting person too.” Aiden thought to himself as he flew to Maria.

Maria was waiting impatiently in her room. Aiden then appeared.

“What took you so long, Aiden?!” Maria said, tapping her feet.

“I got stopped by a few students before I could leave the school.” Aiden said to Maria. He then handed Maria the note he got from Kayla.

Maria read the note. “Is this your way of confessing your love to me? It’s pretty lame you know.” Maria laughed, feeling a bit embarrassed.

“No, I received this from Kayla as I was leaving.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria’s face changed back to aggravated. “Oh, she was trying to be sneaky. Attempting to bypass the General! Ha, that’s why your plan failed you idiot!” Maria said to the window.

“Were you trying to speak to her?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Nah, I was just gloating.” Maria responded. “Okay, how about it? Are you going to take me somewhere for our graduation lunch?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Graduation Lunch? And you want me to choose?” Aiden asked Maria, confused by her request.

“Yes Graduation Lunch. It’s a big accomplishment, so it should be celebrated with some food.” Maria pointed at Aiden.

“Well if I am choosing then it’s going to be without Meat or Fruit.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh, gross. I bet you are just going to take me to a grass field then.” Maria said, pretending to barf.

“Fine, I can have the Golems prepare a Lunch for us, so that it’s exactly what you want to eat, and I wouldn’t have to just watch you.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria shook her head. “Nope, I don’t want that either.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Well, then it seems like you already have a location in mind, how about you just tell me.” Aiden said to Maria, bending down to her.

Maria then smirked. “I think you know where I am thinking.” Maria nodded her head to Aiden.

“Hmm, I am drawing a blank on it.” Aiden responded.

“You know, the place you said you would take me over a year ago, but we still haven’t gone.” Maria said to Aiden, gesturing by pointing at the sky.

Aiden looked up at the sky. “An airplane meal?” Aiden asked Maria.

“For a smart guy, you sure are dumb sometimes.” Maria responded. Maria then got up on her bed so she would be eye level with Aiden. “I’m saying I want to go to the Heavenly Realm today for a Special Graduation Lunch!” Maria proclaimed to Aiden.

“The Heavenly Realm? But I was planning to take you there when you became a Human Adult.” Aiden said to Maria.

“An adult?! Good thing I asked, because that’s so many years away!” Maria said to Aiden. “Why do you have to take that long to prepare?” Maria asked.

“Because you are Human with living cells, those cells would have no idea what to do when they go into the Heavenly Realm. Which is why I would need to prepare a transport vessel for you. And I wanted one that would not need to be changed as you grew, so adulthood would have been the best time.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Well that sucks! I got excited for no reason.” Maria said with disappointment.

Aiden then lifted Maria from the bed and placed her back on the floor.

“How about this. I get chefs from the heavenly realm to prepare us a meal, and gods to decorate the place so it’s worthy of this celebration?” Aiden asked Maria.

“I guess I can settle for that.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“Then when we graduate High School, we can go to the Heavenly Realm.” Aiden added.

“Fine, guess I can wait another 4 years for it. This year flew by anyway.” Maria responded.

Aiden opened a path to the Heavenly Realm. “I will bring us both to the Headquarters when they are finished.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria gave Aiden the ‘OK’ sign. 

He then walked forward, Maria attempted to walk behind him. But while he vanished she just walked through it without interacting at all with the path.

“Boo! I thought it was like a portal.” Maria complained now standing in her room alone.

Aiden walked through the Heavenly Realm and decided to Enter the Hellanistic District.

“So I want a meal that is going to make Maria truly happy. So I am going to need someone who knows about ingredients, someone who can prepare them, and someone who can arrange the festivities to go along with it.” Aiden thought to himself.

Aiden decided to go over to Hera.

Hera sat sitting on a throne as Hephaestus sculpted a representation of the scene from Marble. Aiden walked up to her.

“Hera.” Aiden said to get her attention.

She quickly looked over to Aiden. “Aiden! It has been a while, or has it. I’m not quite sure, time in the Heavenly Realm moves in a cycle doesn’t it?” Hera asked Aiden.

“It does, but you should still have memories of events you hold as significant.” Aiden responded to Hera.

“Ah, yes. I guess that is why despite the many eternities I experience, each event feels like yesterday as long as I remember them.” Hera  reminisces. Hera then brought her focus to Aiden. “So what is it I can do for you this time Aiden?” Hera asked him.

“I just graduated Middle School and my Best Friend, the girl you met before, wants me to provide her with a lunch that is worthy of such an event. Especially since I declined her request to come to the Heavenly Realm.” Aiden explained to Hera.

“You declined her request to come to the Heavenly Realm, now why would you do that. Mortals can come here.” Hera responded to Aiden fanning her arm out wide.

“They become Demigods when they do that, and no longer have the bodies they had on Earth rendering them mortally dead. That is not an event I desire.” Aiden responded.

“You are so strict with your sensibilities, that’s why I like you Aiden. And for the Lunch I recommend you go to my Daughter Hebe, she used to serve us, High Lords, in the past. She also makes an incredible dish, truly one that would at least be worthy of your Lunch. For preparation and environment the Goddess Hestia should be a good fit. And for Entertainment the God Dionysus should do well enough.” Hera informed Aiden.

“Very well, Hebe, Hestia, and Dionysus. I will seek them out. And what about the other districts, do they offer unique dishes or chefs?” Aiden asked Hera.

“Hmm, there is a God in the Norse District that is called Andhrímnir, he prepares an immortal boar creature, one similar to the Phoenix, in that after it dies it arises once more. And another, but I don’t know much about him, his name is Joshua, he is said to be able to multiply dishes several fold, and transform water into Wine, he is in the Near East District. But if you ask me, I think Dionysus would be more than enough to fulfill that.” Hera recommended Aiden.

“Then I’ll be sure to count them out as well. Thank you Hera.” Aiden said to her. Aiden then nodded his head to Hephaestus, acknowledging his presence.

Aiden found the two chefs that Hera recommended, and gathered them together. He found Hebe and Andhrímnir. Hebe wanted to prepare the dish Ambrosia for the Lunch and Andhrímnir wanted to serve Sæhrímnir and show off his abilities with Eldhrímnir. 

“Those two dishes are fine, but we will also need more than that for my Best Friend. So you can span out more with your specialties.” Aiden said to the two.

“I shall prepare the finest alcohol that any mortal could ever hope to drink, it will raise your spirits and-.” Andhrímnir was saying before Aiden interrupted him.

“I don’t want alcohol to be served during this meal. We are too young to partake.” Aiden informed both of them.

“Too young? How old is this she Human?” Andhrímnir asked Aiden.

“She is 13 years old.” Aiden responded.

“13! She is well old enough to drink! A life without Alcohol is no life at all.” Andhrímnir responded to Aiden.

“There will be no compromise on this point.” Aiden said to Andhrímnir.

“Well then, can I help myself to the range of monsters that exists not only in the Norse District, but as well as the others?” Andhrímnir asked.

“If the creatures are not regarded as Benevolent or Poisonous, then you may prepare them. Creatures that are adiaphorous or malevolent may be served, since she is a fan of meat.” Aiden told them.

“Understood.” Hebe responded to Aiden.

Andhrímnir was excited, he wanted to hunt a Kraken.

Aiden left the two to gather their ingredients. Aiden went and picked up Dionysus and Hestia. Aiden asked Hestia to assist Hebe in the acquisition of ingredients, seeing that she had deep knowledge over domestic livelihood, and would be able to guide Hebe in the pallets of Humans.

“I will give you several Golems, with which you are to prepare entertainment for this lunch. No alcohol will be present at this event. And think of an early teenager party, not a middle aged man party.” Aiden said to Dionysus.

“No alcohol? Is wine okay then?” Dionysus asked Aiden.

“Wine is alcohol.” Aiden responded.

“Then what are you drinking at this event?” Dionysus asked, seemingly disappointed.

“Fruit Juices, Water, and Sodas probably.” Aiden responded.

“Fruit Juices, so wine is going to be served.” Dionysus responded, gaining a smile.

“Grape Juice maybe, but not fermented or distilled.” Aiden said, reiterating the point of no alcohol.

“This seems rather boring, but I suppose that’s why you sought me out. I shall make this event one to remember.” Dionysus said to Aiden.

“That’s good to hear.” Aiden responded.

Aiden opened a path to Earth for the Gods and Goddess to make their way to the mansion. He only allowed access to it by the beings whom he selected to make the trip.

Aiden returned to Maria.

“Wow, that took a while. So how’s it going to be?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Well it seems like they are excited to serve this lunch for you, so I think you will enjoy it.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria got excited. “Can’t wait to see what a Heavenly Realm meal is going to taste like!” Maria said to Aiden with an enormous smile.

The Gods were preparing the mansion for the event. The Golems assisted with moving items around the house. The kitchen was filled with food, and the heat within it could cook the sun.

Aiden sat in the living room with Maria giving the Gods time to prepare the event before he brought Maria.

Aiden then stood up. Maria looked up at Aiden.

“Oh, is it time!” Maria excitedly asked.

“This should have been enough time. Let’s go to the Headquarters.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria then ran out of the door and waited for Aiden to create her clear bubble.

“Okay Corporal! To the Headquarters!” Maria commanded Aiden.

Aiden then took off towards the Mansion.

As they approached they were able to hear music coming from the place. Dionysus had gotten the Golems instruments to play for the festivities. 

The two entered the place and the Golems were performing stunts and tricks. Maria looked up at them in amazement.

“Oh, that’s so cool!” Maria said watching one of the Golems flip and land on a post that was only a few centimeters wide.

“Hello, Best Friend of Aiden. Are you feeling well today?” The Goddess Hestia asked Maria.

“Oh, yeah, I’m doing great. Thanks.” Maria responded to the Goddess. “You look so pretty.” Maria complimented Hestia.

“Thank you for the compliment. And for that I will give you this.” Hestia gave Maria a necklace that held a flame inside of it. “As long as you wear this you will not feel weariness. This is an eternal flame. Consider it your graduation gift.” Hestia told Maria.

“Now this is one of the coolest gifts I’ve ever received. Thank you!” Maria said to Hestia. “Now why haven’t you given me a gift this awesome before?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Because you have enough energy as it is.” Aiden joked with Maria.

Hestia then showed them where the seats were.

Aiden and Maria sat down at the table that was prepared.

Maria looked around at everything that was happening in the Headquarters.

“Wow, who knew that Heavenly Beings could be so fun. I thought everyone was like you.” Maria said to Aiden, as she looked up at Dionysus as he breathed fire.

Hebe brought out Nectar for the two’s drink.

Maria looked at it confused by the nearly clear thick liquid. It looked like she just served them corn syrup.

Maria drank a bit of it and she felt lighter, as if all the chemicals and wear within her body had vanished. “Oh wow! This stuff doesn’t taste all that good, but it’s definitely refreshing.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I can request something sweeter for you if that’s what you are looking for.” Aiden said to Maria. “Soda should be available back there.” 

“I’m here to try what the Heavenly Realm has to offer, so I can hold off for now.” Maria responded waiting for the food to come out.

Dionysus got on the microphone and began telling stories about his exploits. Maria listened to the adventures.

In the meantime Hebe brought out the first Dish they were to eat. It was the Steak from one of Hera’s Cows, with a side of Scallops from the personal Lakes of Poseidon. Also Maria was brought nugget created from the meat of the Phoenix, and cutler formed from the scales of Great Leviathans. 

“Oh, this looks good!” Maria said as she began to cut into the steak.

Aiden sat watching Maria. He made sure that the Gods were staying on track with what they were asked to do.

While Maria was busy eating, Aiden noticed that Dionysus started to get into explicit territories with his storytelling. Aiden looked back at him.

“Ah, what I mean to say is that we had a pillow fight that night, with several of her friends. Yeah, that’s what happened.” Dionysus cleaned up his story.

Maria popped a few of the Phoenix Nuggets into her mouth. “Oh wow, these taste like it’s been smoked and have a deep spiciness to them. What animal is this from?” Maria asked Aiden.

Aiden looked at it. “Oh that’s from the Mythological Phoenix.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria then paused. “Wait, like the firebird from Ancient Mythology class?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Yes, exactly that one.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That’s real? I thought all that stuff was just made up.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden looked at Maria confused. “I am literally from the Heavenly Realm, and you found it difficult to believe that an Immortal Bird existed?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Well, I can see you. I’ve never seen a fire chicken before. So wait, how about everyone else here, I thought they were just generic Heavenly Beings like you. DId I read about them too?” Maria asked Aiden.

“You probably read about everyone here.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Wait, so who is that?” Maria pointed at Dionysus.

“He’s Dionysus.” Aiden responded.

“Cool! I read about him. And how about the woman who gave me this?” Maria asked, lifting up her necklace.

“She is the Goddess Hestia.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh wow, that’s two A list Gods so far. And how about the one who served us just now?” Maria asked pointed at the kitchen.

“She is the Goddess Hebe.” Aiden informed Maria.

“I don’t know much about her, except that she is the daughter of Hera and married to Hercules. Oh, and that she served that one special dish. Ah! I forgot the name.” Maria said, trying to remember.

“Wow, I’m actually surprised you know even that much about them.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, they do show up in video games all the time. So how could I not. So do you know Gods like Zeus, Poseidon and Hera?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Your mom actually spoke to Hera before. She was the one who acted like my mom when I enrolled in school.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That is so cool! And you never thought to tell me about that!” Maria pointed at Aiden.

“It never came up.” Aiden responded.

Hebe brought out the Ambrosia for Maria.

“I can take that away from you. Here is your second course. This is my specialty, Ambrosia.” Hebe said to Maria.

“Ah! That’s the name I was trying to think of, Ambrosia! So is this going to make me immortal?” Maria asked Hebe.

“It should, since you are a mortal and all.” Hebe said to Maria.

Maria clamped her hands together. “Thank you for the meal Goddess Hebe.” Maria said to her.

Hebe was surprised, and felt flattered. “It’s my pleasure, Best Friend of Aiden” Hebe responded, going back to the kitchen.

“Wow, that was rather formal for you.” Aiden remarked to Maria.

“Well now that I know that they are Gods, I have to be a bit more presentable.” Maria said, brushing off her clothes.

“You do know in the Heavenly Realm, I rank higher than they do, but I never get that kind of formality.” Aiden laughed.

“One because I never read about you, and two, you are my Best Friend, so of course I wouldn’t be formal to you.” Maria said, taking a bite out of Ambrosia.

As it touched her tongue she felt her body heat up and euphoria spread through her nerves. Though the dish wasn’t the best tasting thing she ever tried, it was definitely the most pleasurable experience that could be had with a meal.

“You’re actually going to let me become immortal?” Maria asked Aiden.

“This is immortality in the sense that you won’t die from old age, but you are young, so its effects are pointless now. And within 7 years all the cells that have the effect of Ambrosia would have split apart and died from mitosis. So it’s closer to a medicine than a relic.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Ah poop! Well at least I can say that I ate it before. Though I don’t think anyone would believe me.” Maria responded to Aiden as she ate more of the dish.

As the lunch was drawing to a close Maria was able to eat meat from the Kraken, Peryton, wings of a Griffin, legs of a hippalectryon, meat of a Unicorn, and a Gyro from the Goat part of a Chimera.

As Maria picked her teeth of the different meals using the horn shards of a Dragon she looked over at Aiden. “So were any of those animals part Human?” Maria asked with a devilish smile.

“No, none of them were part Human in any way. So no Mermaids, Sirens, Pan or any creature like that.” Aiden responded.

“Aww dang it.” Maria said, crossing her arms.

“You wanted to eat a person?” Aiden asked.

“Well I was a little curious to see what a Human would taste like since I was eating Mythological Creatures anyways. I thought they would serve something with a part Human body.” Maria said to Aiden.

“That’s strange. But maybe next time I could request it.” Aiden said to Maria.

Then Andhrímnir came out with the main course. “I hope you have made room for the feast of a lifetime!” Andhrímnir called out, holding a fully prepared dish with Sæhrímnir’s entire body presented. “This is the meal served everyday in the Norse District, or as we call it Valhalla!” Andhrímnir placed it on the table.

Maria was excited because of Andhrímnir’s high energy.

“Awesome! Look at it’s head!” Maria said, looking over the meal.

“Now how do you fit so much food in that tiny body of yours!?” Andhrímnir asked Maria laughing.

“With drive and determination! That’s how!” Maria responded with the same amount of volume as Andhrímnir.

He laughed and handed Maria two giant knives. “Wait until you can try this with a good drink, too bad Aiden rejected the request for alcohol, so you won’t get the full experience. Maybe when you get older I can serve it to ya again. Or maybe you could die and be served it in Valhalla!” Andhrímnir laughed.

Maria laughed with him. Aiden looked at the both of them annoyed.

Andhrímnir returned to the kitchen. Maria was sitting in front of this giant serving of pork. She then began eating.

Hebe came out of the kitchen and wanted to speak with Aiden.

“I’m going to go into the kitchen really quickly.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria nodded her head with a mouthful of pork.

“So what is it?” Aiden asked.

Hebe showed the amount of food that her and Andhrímnir prepared.

“Why’d you two make so much?” Aiden asked.

“We are so used to feeding dozens of people.” Hebe started saying before being interrupted by Andhrímnir.

“In my case hundreds.” Andhrímnir said.

“That we sort of didn’t control the portions.” Hebe said to Aiden.

Aiden looked around at all of it. “Very well, I can make it all disappear.” Aiden said to the two.

“Please don’t do that. It would truly be a waste to allow these creatures to die without being consumed.” The Goddess Hestia said to Aiden.

Hebe nodded her head in agreement. Andhrímnir also seemed to share the same sentiments.

“Fine, I will come up with something for it.” Aiden said to the three.

Aiden walked out and say Maria slowing down on her meal.

“Getting full?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Nah, I can keep going.” Maria responded.

“You know, there is still a full kitchen’s worth of food. What should we do about that?” Aiden asked Maria.

“How much is that?” Maria asked.

“Hmm, probably several times what you just got done eating.” Aiden responded to Maria, looking at Maria’s face.

Maria tried to imagine herself eating all of that.

“Okay… I guess we can host a party?” Maria suggested to Aiden.

“A party? Really?” Aiden wanted to clarify.

“Yes, it can be like a graduation party.” Maria said to Aiden.

Dionysus came up behind them. “I like this idea, are we going to be increasing the size of the audience?” Dionysus asked.

“Yes, but still no alcohol.” Aiden said to him.

“Sure, I heard it the third time.” Dionysus responded. “I can rework the performances for a larger audience.” Dionysus said, clearing his throat.

“Yeah, we can invite nearly everyone from the graduating class.” Maria suggested to Aiden.

“That’s very unlike you.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, I want to leave them with one last regret before we don’t see them anymore. Make them wish they were friends with me earlier haha!” Maria said to Aiden, as she laughed with confidence.

“Very well. I will begin to go to each of their houses, and invite them over.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Sounds like a good plan! I am going to stand at the front door so I can surprise everyone as they come in.” Maria said to Aiden.

“It’ll probably take at least 20 minutes before the first students arrive.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Eh, whatever. You do your part and I’ll do mine.” Maria said. The Golems then came up behind Maria and picked her up. She did not want to walk with so much food in her stomach.

Aiden walked into the kitchen.  “Okay, a significant number of students will be coming here, so you all can begin the preparations for them all.” Aiden said to Andhrímnir and Hebe.

“The Battle is on!” Andhrímnir responded.

Aiden then flew out of the Headquarters and to the homes of his former classmates.

Dionysus was busy preparing the next set of performances. Hestia cleared the area. And the two chefs were preparing the second round, but reformed it for a party rather than a private lunch.

The students were surprised to see Aiden at their front door inviting them to a party. Some of them were only allowed to join if their parents could supervise watch over them. And for the others Hera was able to provide cover as Aiden’s mom.

Pretty soon the students started to enter the Headquarters and were shocked by its size.

“Hey hey!” Maria surprised the glamour trio as she waited at the door for guests.

“I’m surprised that you and Angeal are throwing a going away party. What brought this on?” Ashley asked Maria.

“You know, I didn’t want you all to miss me too much. So I have to go out with a bang.” Maria responded to Ashley.

“So who’s all going to be here?” Ashley asked.

“Anyone from the 8th Grade who could make it. Angeal is inviting everyone. We prepared a ton of exotic foods.” Maria said with a cockiness in her voice.

“How exotic could it possibly be?” Sarah asked.

“This is Maria we are talking about, she brought different foods everyday with her to lunch.” Vanessa responded.

“You all can see for yourself. Just enjoy today because you won’t get to experience this again!” Maria said to them as a Golem came and greeted the girls.

They were startled and amazed to see it.

Alvin came to the door. “So this is art where thy dwell. Mine gratitude for employing mine presence.” Alvin said to Maria.

“Yeah, sure. Eat and do whatever I guess.” Maria responded to Alvin. Alvin immediately went to Dionysus’ performance with an admiration in his eyes.

Katherine and her parents came and greeted Maria.

“Because I graduated today, my parents decided that I should have fun with kids my own age. So no volunteering today.” Katherine said to Maria.

“Glad you could make it! We have to make sure it’s really fun for you then!” Maria said to Katherine.

They all walked in and were greeted by the Golems.

Andhrímnir came up behind Maria. “What would Aiden say about serving these adult mortals alcohol?” He asked, lowering his voice.

“I think Aiden would be okay with that.” Maria responded.

Andhrímnir celebrated. “Ha, now this is a gathering!” He proclaimed and went back into the kitchen.

Alayna came into the house. She looked around and noticed its grand size. “No wonder Angeal is so strong, his hallway is bigger than most gyms.” Alayna said towards Maria.

“Well I guess I’m even happy to see that you came.” Maria said to Alayna with a bit of an attitude.

“Come on, the past is the past.” Alayna said to Maria, patting her head and walking past her.

Kayla then was hiding behind the column of the front. She saw Maria and continued to hide. “Come on, Angeal invited you. You can come in anytime.” Maria said to Kayla, but Kayla remained hidden. “Ah, that’s a bit annoying.”

Joshua, Issac, Rebecca and Silvia all came together.

“Wow, do you guys ever separate?” Maria asked them.

“Joshua was throwing his own party, but we thought we’d come here instead.” Rebecca said to Maria.

“Not that my party was boring, we just wanted to see everyone again, one last time.” Joshua responded.

“Well, you guys already know the layout, so just go in.” Maria said as the prep students entered. Charles followed behind them, nodding to Maria.

Leanne came and was excited to see Maria again. “I got to see you much sooner than I expected! I am so glad!” Leanne said to Maria.

“I’m glad that we could hang out outside of school! I got some interesting food in there you need to try!” Maria excitedly said to Leanne.

“I’m going to eat everything there.” Leanne laughed. She then entered.

Aiden then returned.

Sarah and Mei came out from behind Aiden.

“Wow, Maria, you sure have gotten taller!” Sarah said, looking at Maria.

“You two look healthier too, last time I saw you guys you were looking rough.” Maria said, looking at Mei and Sarah.

“Yeah, I guess not being trapped in a prison does that to you.” Mei laughed.

“So you are a freshman now, good luck in highschool.” Sarah said to Maria.

 “I’ll have Aiden with me, so I’ll be fine.” Maria joked with the two.

“That is right. You are going to be just fine in High School then. I graduated not too long ago, so it’s not going to be so different. You can ask me for advice.” Mei said to Maria as the two of them entered the home and were greeted warmingly by the golems.

Aiden then walked up to the door.

“I invited everyone that we met over the year.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Yeah, I could tell. Seems that you even got the Teachers to come to.” Maria looked in the House.

“Wanted to make sure we got everything eaten.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, I guess this is also a good place to make sure we say Goodbye to everyone, haha.” Maria smiled at Aiden.

Angel Misery: Chapter Seventeen

“Decode and Solve”

The days became longer allowing Maria to stay outside for many more hours. This freed up the chance for Maria and Aiden to go to the headquarters once again.

Aiden and Maria kept their invitation letters in the Computer room, having not touched them since they received them at the High School Fair.

“Finally it’s almost time to graduate from Middle School, I can’t wait to be a High Schooler.” Maria said to Aiden as she was kicking a combat dummy.

Aiden stood behind her as he usually did. “What’s the difference between the two?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Well in High School everyone treats you like an adult, you can go to more parties, and join actual clubs, you could also drive a car. Just so much more stuff!” Maria explained to Aiden.

“You want to go to parties?” Aiden asked Maria, that didn’t seem a part of her nature, so it was of interest to ask her why  she included that in her list.

“Maybe, going to High School I can reinvent myself. I can go from the Girl everyone calls a Tomboy to a Celebrity everyone desires to be.” Maria imagined to herself.

“You could do that now if you wanted.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Nah, it’s too late. Those people don’t deserve to see my transformation.” Maria said to Aiden. She then turned around to look at him.

“And what would you do with a car? I can already take you anywhere you want to go, and even if you wanted to be seen publicly, one of the Golems could drive you.” Aiden asked Maria.

“What if I want to go somewhere on my own. If you take me, or one of the Golems take me, then you’ll always know where I am.” Maria pointed at Aiden.

“Am I not supposed to always know where you are?” Aiden was confused by Maria’s statement once again.

“Oh, speaking of High School.” Maria ran behind Aiden and grabbed her Invitation Letter from one of the computers. “What are we even supposed to do with these? Are they going to send us a schedule? Where is the School even located?” Maria asked Aiden.

Aiden went up to another Computer and projected it onto the large screen in the room. He then began looking up information related to it.

“The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders is a Premier Private Institution, which accepts only the Brightest and Most Capable minds in the World. Students will be expected to fulfill rigorous academic requirements, physical fitness examinations, and a Dissertation prior to graduation. 100% of the Students who graduate from this school go on to become World Renowned Super Influencers in any field in any Nation they decide to live.” Aiden read the Headline on the website.

“Okay, what about admissions, what does it say about that?” Maria asked, looking up at the website.

“Admissions are given on an Invitation only basis. The Invitation Letter has all the information required to begin your first academic year.” Aiden read. The rest of the admissions page was nearly blank. 

Maria looked at her letter. She flipped it over, held it up to the light, but wasn’t getting any information from it. “Obviously they didn’t look over the letters before sending them out or else they would have noticed that ours were blank.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Do you see the punctuation at the end of your letter? That is morse code. Yours says ‘UV’, which means you need to use a blacklight to see the image in the blank area. Your image is of an arrow, which has several rulers in front of it. The bottom reads “Sometimes to solve a paradox is to think outside the box.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Okay, what does that mean?” Maria asked Aiden.

Aiden then grabbed Maria’s letter and folded the edges of her letter so that it formed a box around the arrow. Aiden unfolded the edges and the creases form a Cipher, which used the lines from the crease to decode the words that the arrow pointed to.

After Aiden broke the Cipher he put in the web address it read.

“Wait, they expected me to do all of that, just to get to a website?” Maria was shocked by how difficult the problem would have been if it wasn’t for Aiden’s assistance.

“Well, it is supposedly an Invitation letter to the Top School in the world supposedly, so I expect this is how they weed out anyone unfit, even after sending them letters.” Aiden said to Maria. 

The Website Aiden went to, played a noise on loop.

“This part requires a Spectrograph. Can’t you tell from the unusual pattern in its noise.” Aiden said to Maria.

“No, I didn’t even understand the first step, how would I have understood that?” Maria said to Aiden watching him moving his mouse across the webpage.

Aiden transposed the noise to an image which showed another URL, and had a username and password for the login.

“And that should be it.” Aiden said to Maria finally getting her to the Classroom page of the Website. 

“Congratulations, Miss Maria Li, welcome to the Student Portal for The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders. We are excited to meet you on August 20, 2009. You have been invited due to your submitted entry into the Sequoia Middle School 2008 Science Fair. Your entry was truly innovative, and we plan on nurturing a mind like yours to be the Greatest it can be. To get started, sign in using 2009_LIMARIA_2009 as your Username and t32ju!@jYru75GThp^gqxQ as your temporary password. After putting in this password, you will be prompted to create your own password. Never share Password information with anyone. We look forward to speaking to you soon. Sincerely, Secretary of Education George T. Gilmore the Third.” The webpage read.

“Well look at that, I guess the Science Fair did mean something after all.” Maria laughed.

“I suppose I will solve my puzzle now.” Aiden said to Maria. “My code requires a bit more tools to actually solve.” Aiden showed Maria.

“What kind of tools?” Maria asked Aiden.

“One, I need to use an Acid to actually read it, and a barcode scanner to scan the revealed image. It seems that any acid would do as long as it has a PH level of 5 or lower.” Aiden explained to Aiden.

Maria nodded her head, coming to a slow realization.

Aiden looked over at Maria.

“What’s wrong?” Aiden asked Maria with concern.

“So, everyone at that school would have gone through a puzzle like this?” Maria asked Aiden.

“I can only assume.” Aiden said to Maria.

“This High School sounds really hard.” Maria said nervously.

“It probably would be, do you not want to go?” Aiden asked Maria.

“No, as long as you are there I should be fine. I’m just the tiniest bit worried.” Maria was saying before she turned around to regain her confidence. “But I won’t let that stop me! I am the General afterall!” Maria proclaimed in the house.

“You are correct, I will be there that entire time. So if you need anything, there will be no problem.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria then left the room to grab some snacks out of the kitchen. The Golem followed her in awaiting her requests.

Aiden finally made it through all of his codes and was on his Student Portal. Aiden then continued through the site to see if he could gain any more information on the school.

There was a list of courses to take. Some courses were straightforward like Intro to Machine Learning and AI development, to more technical courses such as Introduction to Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeat Information Acquisitions.

Aiden looked at these courses and was trying to figure out which would be best for Maria.

“All of these seem quite advanced for her. She may not even be able to grasp even the description of these courses, let alone the course work for it.” Aiden thought to himself.

Maria came back in with a bowl of frosted Sugar Cookies.

“Now what are you doing?” Maria asked Aiden. She looked up on the screen and saw a bunch of long words listed in columns.

“These are classes, are there any on there that stick out to you?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria looked up at the screen. “Hmm, I don’t know what a single one of those words are supposed to mean.” Maria said, as she placed another cookie in her mouth. “The one that looks most interesting would probably be.” Maria pointed at a class on the screen.

“Engineering and Applied Sciences.” Aiden read out to Maria.

“Yeah, that one. I know what all of those words mean.” Maria responded to Aiden. “But let’s stop looking at classes, it’s the weekend, we can leave that school stuff for later.” Maria said to Aiden trying to pull him out of the room.

“Sure, I suppose this isn’t of the utmost urgency.” Aiden responded to Maria following her out of the computer room.

The weekend ended and the fun had come to a close as the school week began.

Maria was exhausted in homeroom.

“Make sure to study for your upcoming finals next month, just because you already selected your high school doesn’t mean you can relax. You can still fail the 8th Grade.” Miss Ryans said to the class.

“As if I am going to get trapped in the 8th Grade.” Maria thought to herself, lifting her head up to pay attention.

After class Maria, Aiden and Silvia all walked together.

“Why are you so tired today?” Silvia asked Maria.

“Well if you must know, I was thinking about what kind of Super Sciency Spy I wanted to be when I got into High School.” Maria said to Silvia, gloating to her.

“What brought on that thought?” Silvia asked Maria.

Maria then looked around to make sure no one was listening.

“So, the school that I got into requires you to break a code using all sorts of stuff like Picture devices, folding papers and all kinds of stuff. It’s meant to be top secret, so I didn’t tell you anything.” Maria said quietly to Silvia, pretending that she was sharing information that if anyone heard it would need to be eliminated.

“Oh, so those letters were your invitation letters to the High School for Global Letters.” Silvia replied to Maria.

“Wait, how do you know?!” Maria asked stunned that Silvia was able to guess.

“Because I got a letter too. Though I can’t really quite figure it out. I was able to use heat to reveal the image, but that’s about as far as I got. I don’t know what to do next.” Silvia said to Aiden and Maria.

“Did everyone get a letter?” Maria asked Silvia.

“No, it seems like it was only us three. I guess because of the Science Fair.” Silvia responded to Maria.

“Well, I guess it’s going to suck for you if you can’t figure out the code on your letter.” Maria smirked at Silvia.

“Did you finish yours?” Silvia asked Maria.

“Sure did, and it was easy too. It only took about 5 minutes.” Maria laughed.

“I bet Angeal was the one  who actually solved it. I can’t see you even figuring out the first piece of the puzzle.” Silvia said to Maria.

“He only helped a little. I did most of the work.” Maria pointed at Silvia, trying to prove her greater intelligence to Silvia.

Silvia pulled her letter out of her backpack.

“I didn’t want to show you until I knew that you got a letter as well.” Silvia said to Aiden. “Can you take a look, don’t tell me the answer, just a little hint would do.” Silvia showed Aiden her letter.

“Hey, you can’t do that! You are breaking the rules!” Maria said, trying to grab the letter.

Aiden looked at it. “The numbers are referring to the L. Richard Bentley editions of Moby Dick. Use the pages to break the code for the numbers on the side of the letter.” Aiden said to Silvia, handing her back the letter.

“Whoa, how’d you figure that out.” Silvia asked Aiden, placing it back into her backpack.

“The image is of a whale, and in the back you will see a fishing boat. The boat is flying a British Flag, and on the side of the boat reads 1851. Then the quote on the bottom of the image is a quote from Moby Dick, or actually in that Edition ‘The Whale’. So putting it all together tells you which book, and what edition of the book you need to use.” Aiden explained to Silvia.

“I knew that too, just from looking at the letter while you were handing it to Angeal.” Maria added after Aiden had finished talking.

“All right. Then I will go on and figure the rest out on my own. Thank you Angeal.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“Wait, if you do figure it out, then me and you are going to be stuck in the same school again!” Maria said, realizing that Silvia was on her way to going to the same High School.

“It’s quite literally the best school, of course I am going to go. I was going to go there regardless if you were admitted or not.” Silvia said to Maria.

“Oh well, it’s High School. I am going to reinvent myself. So don’t bring up the past if we see each other around.” Maria said to Silvia with a threatening look.

“If you are obviously lying I am going to call you out on it. If not, then you can do whatever you feel like doing.” Silvia responded to Maria.

Maria then started laughing.

“What’s so funny?” Silvia asked Maria.

“It’s going to be funny watching you not be the smart girl anymore. Since everyone there is practically going to be geniuses.” Maria laughed at Silvia.

“Ah, if I am going to be average there, then I really fear for your sake.” Silvia said to Maria, as they all got to the second bell class.

While in the second bell class Aiden felt like he was being watched.

Aiden turned around and didn’t see anyone there. Aiden looked back confused. “That’s odd.” Aiden thought to himself.

The day continued on. It was time for Lunch.

Silvia was not down with the prep students for the first half of lunch. She was up in the library looking for that version of Moby Dick.

The 8th Graders were all speaking to one another about High Schools and Finals. That was the only thing on everyone’s minds this month.

Aiden brought Maria to grab a funnel cake and corn dogs at an amusement park resort. Aiden looked around as if on edge.

“What got you so eager?” Maria looked up at Aiden noticing his distracted look.

“Did you feel anything earlier in class today?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Like boredom, ha.” Maria laughed.

“Nevermind.” Aiden responded to Maria. Aiden then looked down at Maria. “Will you be okay for a minute? I can leave a Golem here with you.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh, where are you going?” Maria asked Aiden.

“I’m going to the Heavenly Realm, I need to check something.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Oh, sure. You don’t need to create a Golem. I’ll be good on my own.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then stepped into the rip in space and went into the Heavenly Realm.

He walked directly towards the area of Aspects. The individuals tasked with delivering messages down to various plans of existence.

“Juniper!” Aiden called out to one of the Aspects.

Juniper looked over at Aiden. “What is the reason you called for me?” Juniper asked Aiden.

“Do you know of anyone who was around my area, in my current time?” Aiden asked Juniper.

Juniper thought to himself. “No, there shouldn’t have been any missions around where you are. Not for another few years from your current time.” Juniper said to Aiden.

“I felt like I was being watched. It felt like an Aspect, but somehow a bit different.” Aiden said to Juniper.

“It may be the same person you ran into several months ago, they said they were an Aspect as well, correct?” Juniper asked Aiden.

“But that one warned us about changing history or something. I was sitting in class when this happened.” Aiden explained to Juniper the situation and confusion.

“We can ask the Almighty about it, if it concerns you.” Juniper suggested to Aiden.

“No, it’s not so serious. It’s not like I was attacked. I was just curious if there were any missions happening.” Aiden clarified.

“Very well.” Juniper said, walking away from Aiden.

Aiden reopened a route out of the heavenly Realm.

Maria was sitting on a bench in the Amusement Park. She had finished her Corn Dogs.

Aiden returned.

“Did you figure out what you were looking for?” Maria asked Aiden.

“No, I didn’t.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Eh, well it was probably nothing then. While you were gone, I saw a kid with a soft serve, I want one myself.” Maria said to Aiden with excitement.

“We aren’t really out for amusement, you just wanted a funnel cake.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Come on Aiden, getting some ice cream isn’t going to make us miss lunch.” Maria complained to Aiden.

“Fine, the line doesn’t seem too long now.” Aiden said looking at about 5 people waiting in line for their order.

Silvia returned back down to the lunch room and looked around. She was surprised that Aiden and Maria still had not returned. “Wow, they are later than usual. I wonder where they go.” Silvia thought to herself.

Aiden and Maria soon came in, Maria still had half of her funnel cake in her hand.

“All done in the library?” Issac asked Silvia.

“Obviously.” Silvia responded.

“Were you able to find out what you were trying to solve?” Rebecca asked Silvia.

“I did, but I needed to type in a URL, I would prefer to do that at home, so that I could analyze the site at my own pace.” Silvia responded to Rebecca.

“Sounds like a lot of work to get into a High School.” Joshua said amazed that Silvia was still trying to get enrolled into the school.

Silvia didn’t respond.

Maria was tearing through her funnel cake, trying to finish it before the lunch period ended.

“You should probably slow down, you’ll give yourself an upset stomach.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I’m not going to let this go to waste! You know how hard it is to get one.” Maria said to Aiden with powdered sugar on her lips. “Do you think someone at our new High School is going to have a machine that makes one of these? I can only imagine they would if they were actually the smartest in the world.” Maria asked Aiden.

“I could create one for you if you’d like.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria then looked up at Aiden stunned at the fact that she never asked for one. “Okay Corporal, you are to add one of these in the Head Quarters immediately!” Maria ordered Aiden.

“Aye aye.” Aiden responded to Maria knowing that’s the response she wanted.

The end of the school day came.

Silvia returned home. And she placed her backpack and books on the floor next to her studying desk in her Families Library.

She placed Moby Dick and the Invitation Letter on the surface of the empty desk. Silvia took a deep breath in then she looked down at the letter.

“So each of these number triples must relate to the page number, the line number, and the word number in this book.” Silvia thought to herself scrolling through the book looking for the corresponding locations.

“Is there anything I can get for you Miss Silvia?” Charles, Silvia’s Butler, asked.

Silvia was focused on her work and didn’t respond. She was trying her hardest not to lose her train of thought.

“Okay, so that goes there. Now for the next word…” Silvia quickly went back and forth between the pages. And counted up from one over and over.

Most of the codes led to singular letters. Which made the half page worth of numbers give barely any information.

By the end of the entire process Silvia was left with the sentence: “Call 555-886-8221 the secret password is Lucky Lucy 20 Goosey”.

Silvia sat back on her chair finally relaxing after the full hour of continued panning through paragraphs and flipping pages.

Charles brought Silvia a Lemonade.

“Here you are Miss Silvia.” Charles said, handing Silvia the refreshing drink. 

She took a solid drink from the cup and placed it on the desk next to her book. “Thank you Charles, I needed that.” Silvia said to him.

“Is there anything else I could do for you Miss Silvia?” Charles asked her, he waited for an answer.

“Oh, may you bring the phone in here. I need to dial a number for the High School I want to go to.” Silvia responded. Charles then went to go and grab the wireless phone.

Silvia picked up the solved code. “Lucky Lucy 20 Goosey, who comes up with these?” Silvia thought to herself.

Charles then came in with the phone.

“Now can you dial this number?” Silvia showed him the number on the page.

Charles dialed it. There were 3 rings then an answer. “Password Please.” The person on the other line said.

“Oh, of course.” Silvia said, clearing her throat. “Lucky Lucy 20 Goosey.” Silvia responded.

There was a transfer sound on the other end.

Then a series of numbers and letters started to be read off like it was a call station.

Silvia grabbed her pen quickly and started to write down what was being said. The numbers and letters seemed endless.

After a few minutes of listening Silvia noticed that it started to repeat, so she made sure that she recorded what was being said correctly before ending the call.

Silvia looked at the string of characters and had no idea what to do with it.

“What may this be Miss Silvia?” Charles asked Silvia.

“It’s a code that I need to break to gain entrance into the High School I want to go to. I’m not sure what this is telling me. But it has to be something.” Silvia responded to Charles while she continued to look at the paper. “If it was Chemistry, then I wouldn’t be having any issues.” Silvia thought to herself.

Silvia grabbed the book again and tried to see what it was saying if she followed the same pattern. But she noticed that it was plain nonsense. 

“What could this be?” Silvia thought to herself. The string of letters meant nothing to her.

Charles looked over her shoulders, but he too could not make a guess of it.

Silvia got up from her seat and brought the series of characters down with her.

“I’m going to the computer room.” Silvia said. Charles followed behind her. Silvia was trying to remember if the person she was talking to before she gave the password gave her any hints.

Silvia entered the computer room.

She typed in ‘common coding language’. But she got the results for programming languages. She then searched again but instead used encrypted as a keyword.

Silvia looked at a few that were showing up. And she noticed that the string of letters that she wrote looked most similar to hexadecimal. So she wrote the string into the converter and got a URL.

“Ah! Finally!” Silvia cheered. She let out a sigh of relief.

“Congratulations Miss Silvia.” Charles said to her.

Silvia typed in the URL and she was presented with another image. “Oops, Error 404. Seems that the Secretary Bird has hidden the information.” It reads on top of the webpage with an image of a secretary bird.

Silvia tilted her head up in exasperation. 

“It’s like it never ends.” Silvia said, releasing the frustration she was having.

“Maybe try to have a short break, Miss Silvia.” Charles suggested to Silvia.

Silvia got her from her chair and went into the living room to relax for a short while.

Maria and Aiden were in the headquarters. Maria was shooting paintballs at the Golems. Aiden was watching overhead distributing the scores and keeping track of time.

Maria hid behind cover as the Golems were returning fire at Maria. She snuck around their flanks and shot them.

“Haha! You never stood a chance against me!” Maria laughed as Aiden tallied up the final scores.

“Looks like you won again.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria grabbed her sports drink and shot it into her mouth like an athlete.

“What can I say, I am just a master when it comes to tactics.” Maria responded.

“It could be that you told the Golems not to shoot directly at you.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I suggested that they don’t shoot directly at me, I never said that ‘You aren’t allowed to shoot directly at me.’” Maria imitated what she thought Aiden thought she said.

“You literally said: ‘Don’t shoot at me or else I am going to get upset.’ The Golems don’t want to see you in any mood but Happy, so you may as well command them not to shoot you.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“That’s up to them.” Maria said with a smirk on her face.

Aiden then created a paintball gun for himself. “How about I give it a try?” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria backed away. “No, you are going to leave bruises on me.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“You never cared about that before.” Aiden smiled.

“”Well, I’m already done, so Game’s Over.” Maria responded laughing. “Now it’s time that we watched a movie!” Maria said, getting out of her military uniform.

“It looked like you had several more rounds in you.” Aiden said as he watched Maria continue out of the Ball Rooms.

 Maria jumped on the couch. “Hachiach, bring over the popcorn!” Maria said to the Golem.

“Is that really the name you gave it?” Aiden asked Maria as he finally got into the Theatre Room.

“I think? I gave them all names when we first got back into the Head Quarters, but I’m not sure which names goes to who. But it responded so I’m probably correct.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“You also don’t have to ask them to make you popcorn, I can make that for you.” Aiden said to Maria. He created a bag of popcorn for Maria.

Maria declined the offer.

“I want the natural stuff, the ones that take effort to make!” Maria responded to Aiden as she scanned through the disks searching for a movie.

“There is no discernible difference between the two, if anything, mine would be closer to perfect.” Aiden said to Maria trying to defend his creation abilities. Since it seemed as though Maria was looking down at them.

“It’s about the imperfections, Aiden. Sometimes I want a half popped piece, sometimes I want some that’s slightly burnt. It can’t always be perfect, then it’ll get boring.” Maria said to Aiden finally finding a movie.

“Are you suggesting that I am boring?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria laughed. “You are suggesting that you are perfect, that is funny, Aiden. You have a lot to accomplish before you can be perfect.” Maria jest. “Now as for me, I am Perfect. So the closer you get to being like me, the more perfect you will be.” Maria suggested to Aiden.

Maria and Aiden began watching an animated movie. 

The Golem brought over Maria’s popcorn. “Thanks.” Maria said, grabbing the bag and bringing it over to her lap to watch the movie.

Silvia finished taking her break and went back to the computer room.

“Okay, let’s try this again.” Silvia thought to herself. She looked at the webpage with the secretary bird. She leaned in further to try and see if she was missing something.

“This seems like something Joshua would be good at.” Silvia thought to herself, straining her eyes on the screen.

“May I suggest you lower the brightness of your screen, Miss Silvia. The brightness of the screen will begin to hurt your eyes if you sit that close to it.” Charles said to Silvia.

“Oh right.” Silvia responded. She then lowered the brightness of her monitor.

As Silvia lowered the brightness she noticed that some parts of the image were now barely visible. This made her think that she could alter the image by playing around with the colour settings.

Silvia toyed with the monitor trying to make the image do anything.

She eventually made the image its own negative, and raised the brightness of it. Within the tall legs of the secretary bird read another URL, but this time it had a username and password.

Silvia entered that into the address bar and went to it. It prompted her to put in a username and password to access the page.

“Congratulations, Miss Silvia Reiners. Welcome to the Student Portal for The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders. We are excited to meet you on August 20, 2009. You have been invited due to your submitted entry into the Sequoia Middle School 2008 Science Fair. Your project is an advancement of one of our working prototypes at the school and we would be honoured to develop it alongside you. Like minded students across campus are eager to introduce themselves to you. To get started, sign in using 2009_ReinersSil_2009 as your Username and rgH$52SvcxT765&%gEWMl08Yc1@ as your temporary password. Never share Password information with anyone. We look forward to speaking to you soon. Sincerely, Secretary of Education George T. Gilmore the Third.” The webpage read.

Silvia celebrated again. “Yes! I did it! I got in!” Silvia said with excitement.

Charles once again congratulated Silvia.

“They said I was sent an invitation because of my submission into the Science Fair. I better thank Angeal for helping me. He had done so much for me as of late.” Silvia said to Charles.

“Is there a particular gift you have in mind, Miss Silvia?” Charles asked Silvia.

“What should I give him?” Silvia thought to herself. “He is a fan of reading books. And he reads through them rather quickly. Maybe I should send a shipment of books to him so he can add more to the library he has.” Silvia suggested.

“That can be arranged.” Charles responded to Silvia. 

“Ah, but we will be leaving in a few months. So having a library of books you can’t read would feel like torture. Maybe I should get polish for his robots.” Silvia also suggested.

“Whatever you feel is best, Miss Silvia.” Charles responded.

“Oh! I’m going to buy him a suit! I would love to see him wearing one.” Silvia made that suggestion as well.

“What may his measurable be, Miss Silvia?” Charles asked Silvia.

“I have no idea. He is tall… that’s about it. If I ask him for his measurements then he will guess the gift I am getting him. And he would say something like ‘You don’t have to give me anything.’ and I definitely can’t let him do that. Plus he would probably tell Maria about it, and she would just get upset.” Silvia said.

“May I suggest bringing a few of your Father’s suits to his place and have him try it on. Then you could work under the guise that you are seeing which colours would look best for your cousin.” Charles suggested to Silvia.

“That’s a great idea. Not only can I thank Angeal, but I can also spend an afternoon just looking at him in suits.” Silvia responded with excitement. She was still happy about getting into the school.

The next day came.

Silvia was happier than usual and her classmates noticed.

“What’s up with you today?” Rebecca asked Silvia in class.

Silvia then returned to her typical face. “What do you mean?” Silvia responded to Rebecca.

“Oh, nothing. I thought something was a little off.” Rebecca said before returning to doing her classwork.

Silvia also went back to doing her classwork, but slowly as she was daydreaming her smile returned.

Maria was turned facing away from Silvia as she was talking to Aiden.

After class Maria, Aiden and Silvia wall walked to the second bell together as usual.

“Angeal, guess what.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“You passed gas as we were walking, which is why you are smiling.” Maria said to Silvia.

“No, I didn’t do that. And no.” Silvia responded not finding any amusement in Maria’s guess.

“You solved your puzzles and now are enrolled in the same school as me and Maria?” Aiden guessed.

Silvia was impressed, but not surprised. “Wow, you are a good guesser.” Silvia said to Aiden. “Yes! I solved the final puzzle sometime last night. And they said I got invited because of the science fair project you helped me with. So thank you Angeal!” Silvia thanked Aiden.

“Hey, you should be thanking me too. If it weren’t for me, you two would not have been working together.” Maria said to Silvia.

“It pains me to actually think that that is true.” Silvia responded.

“Congratulations Silvia. You deserved it. I only helped in a minor way. That goes for both of you.” Aiden said to Maria and Silvia.

“I’m still waiting for my thank you from Silvia.” Maria responded.

“You are so annoying.” Silvia said to Maria. “But anyway, my cousin is about to have a formal gathering, and I would like to get him a suit, but I don’t know his size and it’s going to be a surprise. You two have very similar body shapes, so I was wondering if you could try some on, so I could see what I need to fix.” Silvia asked Aiden.

Aiden looked over at Maria.

“I’ll allow it, if Silvia says thank you.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Really, you are still going on about this?” Silvia asked Maria.

Maria opened her hands waiting for Silvia to say thank you.

“Whatever, if it satisfies you. Thank you Maria.” Silvia said to Maria.

“Darn, it seems that I went deaf for a second. I didn’t hear what you said.” Maria pretended to get Silvia to say it again.

“Thank you Maria.” Silvia said again but with less emphasis.

“Aw man, it sounded like you said, you didn’t want to hang out with Angeal. Well that’s too bad, I was really hoping that you two could hang out.” Maria jokingly said to Silvia.

“You had better be getting your fill on this.” Silvia said to Maria, feeling a bit aggravated. “Thank you Maria for your help.” Silvia said.

“It was my pleasure, Silvia.” Maria responded with a smirk.

“There we have it. I am willing to try on those suits for you.” Aiden said to Silvia.

Silvia’s face gained a smile again. “Great! Then we can do that this weekend?” Silvia asked.

“Sure, this weekend is fine.” Maria said to Silvia.

“It’s crazy how much control you have over his schedule.” Silvia said to Maria.

“Two weeks from now is starting to feel like it’ll be a better time.” Maria responded.

Silvia walked silently.

When the third bell rang Maria had to separate from Aiden and Silvia. Silvia and Aiden walked together.

They both initially walked silently together. Then Silvia broke the silence.

“Are you looking forward to High School, Angeal?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“I don’t have any strong feelings for or against it. It feels like it’s just another event.” Aiden responded to Silvia.

“We will be surrounded by other Geniuses. I’m a bit nervous because solving that puzzle wasn’t exactly the easiest thing for me.” Silvia said to Aiden feeling a bit apprehensive.

Aiden noticed Silvia’s emotion of being both happy and nervous.

“In the end you were able to solve it. So at the very least you are among the others at the school. And seeing how well you can face problems you’ve never seen before, I don’t think you have anything to worry about.” Aiden said to Silvia.

“Yes, this is true. But if they give us another puzzle like that except with a strict time limit, I might be in trouble.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“This may be true. But when living things experience trouble, those that find a way to overcome it typically come out of it stronger.” Aiden responded to Silvia.

“Hmm, I guess that’s true in some cases. If the trouble is too much, then living things typically die.” Silvia responded to Aiden.

“That happens too.” Aiden said as a matter of fact. Then he continued to walk.

Silvia grinned looking up at Aiden. He didn’t try to sugar coat that it’ll be difficult. And that’s what Silvia liked about Aiden.

The Weekend came. Charles drove Silvia to Aiden Mansion.

Charles carried a few of the suits as he walked behind Silvia. Silvia rang the doorbell and she could hear Maria’s footsteps coming to answer the door.

Maria opened the door. “Surprise!” Maria said to Silvia.

“If I didn’t know any better, I would have thought you were happy to see me.” Silvia responded to Maria’s cocky grin.

“Just wanted to see your face change.” Maria grinned at Silvia. “Come on in.” Maria gestured for them to enter.

Silvia walked inside, and Charles followed behind her with the suits.

The Golems gestured for Charles to hand them the suits. “You are our guest here. Please may you allow them to hold those for you.” Aiden said to Charles.

Silvia gestured for Charles to allow them.

Charles handed the suits to the Golems. Other Golems then brought out drinks for Silvia and Charles.

“Oh, well Thank you.” Charles said surprised that he was being served.

“So how do you want me to try these on? Am I trying on the trousers first and then the blouse?” Aiden asked Silvia and Charles.

“I could help you with that, Sir.” Charles said to Aiden.

“Sure, I don’t want to ruin what you brought over.” Aiden said, allowing Charles to assist him. Aiden was using this to learn about clothing measurements and etiquette.

They both went into a fitting room with several Golems following behind them.

Maria then brought a chair over next to Silvia.

“So…” Maria said, looking at Silvia.

“What?” Silvia responded.

“Are you scared about not being the smartest in the school anymore?” Maria raised and lowered her eyebrows.

“I already wasn’t the smartest in the school. Angeal had the place for the past year.” Silvia responded.

“Yea, but he doesn’t really count. When we get to the new school, there’s going to be like a few dozen people smarter than you. Then you’ll be the one that is called average.” Maria joked with Silvia.

“Then I guess that would put you in quite the precarious position.” Silvia responded.

“That sounds like an insult, but it doesn’t really matter because I got Angeal in my corner the entire time. So it’s going to be smooth sailing for me.” Maria smiled.

“Well, I’m not going to let you show me up. No matter how hard I have to work. That applies to school work and Angeal.” Silvia said to Maria.

“Oh, the war continues.” Maria laughed.

Aiden came out in the first suit.

Despite the arms and legs looking a bit short, the rest of the suit looked great on Aiden.

“Wow, looking sharp!” Silvia said to Aiden.

“I agree, Sir. You do look rather splendid in this attire.” Charles said to Aiden.

“It’s much tighter than I am used to. But if that’s the style then, thank you.” Aiden responded.

Maria’s eyes also opened up wide when she saw Aiden in the suit.

Aiden then went back in to try on another. And it looked good on him as well.

After a little over an hour of trying on outfits, and colours, Silvia left from Aiden’s place.

“Did you get the measurements Charles?” Silvia asked him.

“I did, he is indeed quite the built fellow. His parents raised him strong and healthy.” Charles responded.

“Sounds like you’ve taken a liking to him.” Silvia joked with Charles.

“He reminds me of a younger me.” Charles said to Silvia. Silvia chuckled a bit.

“You were like Angeal? That would have been interesting to see.” Silvia smirked.

Charles continued to drive back to Silvia’s house. He then placed an order for a custom suit for Aiden, with the measurements he got.

Charles then looked at an image of himself holding a young Silvia. He looked much stronger back then. He then put the image away and laughed to himself.

Silvia sat in her study, reading books on deciphering, coding and encryption. While Aiden and Maria continued to play games.

Angel Misery: Chapter Sixteen

“Pure Talent”

It was the day of the High School Fair, where High School students from across notable schools attempt to win over the Heart of the 8th Graders at Maria’s Middle School. Determining the High School you are most interested in could determine the shape of your entire life from there on out. At least that would be the case if you were not friends with a Heavenly Being.

Maria walked around slightly annoyed. “I guess I shouldn’t complain because at least we get the day out of normal classes, but I would prefer to be at home, than at school if we weren’t going to do class work anyways.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Do none of these High School Stands peak your interest?” Aiden asked Maria, gesturing to a few. “That High School seems to focus on Athletics, that may be a good fit. And over there focuses on Chemistry, you could probably make explosions there.” Aiden tried to get Maria excited.

The prep Students were all together talking to the River Valley High School, an extremely prestigious STEM school.

Maria and Aiden looked over in that direction when suddenly a loud roar was heard on the other side of the Gymnasium. It was at the Black Bear Mountains Highschool’s Athletic Obstacle Course and Climbing wall.

A girl had just matched the score of a Freshman Male Highschooler at that school. The 8th Graders who were watching cheered her on.

“What’s happening over there Aiden?” Maria asked, trying to see what all the noise was about, but unable to see over the crowd in front of her.

“Seems that one of our classmates broke a record at that school.” Aiden responded.

“Who was it?” Maria asked quickly.

“Her name is Alayna Munez, she’s in our homeroom. Sits in the second row, third column. Close to where Rebecca sits.” Aiden detailed to Maria.

“Alayna? The really tall girl with the strong forearms?” Maria asked.

“She is taller than most, so I think you have the correct person in mind.” Aiden responded. “Matching a Highschool Boy is a rather impressive feat for someone in the 8th Grade though.” Aiden said, trying to understand why so many cheered.

Maria looked up at Aiden. After hearing Aiden practically compliment Alayna, Maria gained a scowl on her Face. 

“What’s so impressive about climbing a wall, anyone can do that.” Maria said to Aiden.

“While that is true, anyone could do that. It’s really about the speed of doing it that’s important.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria then began to walk towards the Obstacle Course and climbing wall. As she got closer she started to realize how tall the wall actually was, and the length of the course.

Maria went up to one of the High Schoolers. “I want to try!” Maria said to them.

“Are you sure, this isn’t some game, you could get hurt if you aren’t careful. Passing this course takes a lot of Physical Strength.” The High Schooler said to Maria.

“You’re calling me too weak?!” Maria responded.

“How about you try the pull ups part of the course first, and see how you feel about it. The Climbing Wall is at the end of the course, so we can’t just skip you to it.” The High Schooler said.

Maria walked over to the pull bars. For Girls they needed to complete 5 Pull Ups, then run to the Monkey Bars and climb across them. Following that was three ropes Swings to three separate platforms. After completing that would be the end of the first part of the Obstacle course.

Maria looked over at the bars. Aiden finally caught up to Maria.

“Why are you doing this? Are you interested in this High School?” Aiden asked Maria.

“It’s about the Principal.” Maria responded.

“The Principal?” Aiden thought to himself confused as to what Maria meant.

Silvia, Rebecca, Issac, and Joshua came over to watch Maria attempt.

“You got this Maria!” Rebecca cheered.

Maria grabbed the bar with both of her hands. She then started to bring herself up slowly.

The other students around started watching Maria. “Hey look, the tomboy is trying it now.” One of the students said.

“Come on stupid muscles, lift me up!” Maria frustratingly said to herself.

Maria was slowly lifting herself up, but she was barely making any progress.

“Oh, she’s actually going to get one.” Silvia said, looking at Maria’s forehead clear over the bar.

Maria with the last bit of her strength lifted her chin over the bar. “Okay, that’s one…” Maria said with extreme exhaustion.

The sweat on Maria’s hand eventually made her lose grip of the bar and she fell off of it. Aiden then dashed over to Maria and caught her.

“Aww.” The students said watching this.

Some of the girls now wanted to attempt so that they could slip and have Aiden catch them.

Maria went over to the side. A few more students attempted the pull ups in the background but couldn’t do one.

“Are you all good?” Joshua asked Maria.

“Of course I am. I am great, never better.” Maria responded to Joshua.

“I didn’t even think you could do one, that was definitely a shock.” Silvia jested at Maria.

“I was certainly impressed, I also thought talks about you being an athletic girl was all because of your boyish appearance. But I can see that you have some strength.” Alayna said to Maria. Alayna extended her hand to Maria. “My name is Alayna, we are at the same first bell. Though we never spoke to one another.” Alayna said with a smile.

Maria reluctantly shook Alayna’s hand. “I just slipped, if I didn’t I probably would have beat your score.” Maria said to Alayna.

“Oh, then try this.” Alayna said, as she went into her bag and pulled out some chalk. “If you use this, you won’t slip as easily.” Alayna gestured for Maria to use some.

Maria was stunned that her bluff was called. Maria slowly brought her hand to the chalk bag.

“Whoa, you got some speed kid.” A Senior Guy from the Blackbear Mountains High School said to Aiden.

“Don’t worry about him calling you kid, he calls everyone that.” Another Senior, this time a Gal, said to Aiden.

“Yee, you went from 0 to 100 in no time flat. You should give this course a try.” The Senior Guy said to Aiden.

“I’m okay, I don’t think I should.” Aiden responded.

“Come on Angeal! It would be cool to finally watch you fail- I mean dominate the course.” Joshua said to Aiden, with obvious motives.

“I think that would be interesting to watch.” Silvia said, looking up at Aiden.

“The Great Angeal is afraid of a little course?” Alayna said to Aiden.

Aiden looked down at Maria. Maria exhaled. “Just go and do it, at least one of us has to keep the ranking of our Military force high.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden looked back over at the seniors. “I suppose I will try.” Aiden responded.

“Awesome. Okay, so for boys. You have to finish 9 Pullups, then cross the monkey bars, and the rope platforms. Following that you climb over the 3 meter wall, and grab the 50kg Medicine Ball, carrying that 10 Meters. After placing it at the end, you pull up an 80Kg weight with a rope until it hits the top. After finishing that you go to the Climbing wall and climb up until you hit the bell, then that is time.” The Senior guy explained to Aiden.

“Sounds straightforward.” Aiden responded.

“As your General, I order you to get below 1 minute!” Maria said to Aiden.

“That’s practically impossible, even at the top levels this course takes about 2.5 minutes to complete.” Alayna said to Maria.

“I bet it’s not.” Maria smiled with a cocky look at Alayna.

Alayna turned to watch Aiden.

“Whenever you’re ready, kid.” The Senior Guy said to Aiden.

Aiden immediately grabbed onto the pull-up bars and did 9 Pull Ups in under 9 seconds. Then Aiden got down and walked to the Monkey Bars. He moved across them as if he weighed nothing.

The Seniors stood in awe of the agility Aiden displayed. However, between each Obstacle Aiden walked.

Aiden cleared the Monkey Bars in 5 seconds, and proceeded to the Ropes. He dashed forward just using the ropes to steer forward without swinging back once. He cleared the ropes in 3 seconds.

Aiden walked over to the second part of the Obstacle Course, starting with the 3 Meter Wall. Aiden nearly vertically jumped over it and continued. 

Alayna looked at the time that was showing on the course. Only 30 seconds had passed. Aiden was now at the Medicine Ball. He carried it as if it was a Book. Aiden had been so used to carrying Maria everywhere that this medicine ball was only slightly noticeable. Continuing on it was the weight.

At this point only 37 Seconds had elapsed. 

“Yeah Angeal! Show them our Power!” Maria cheered.

The Middle Schoolers began to cheer watching Aiden destroy the course. It was like watching a Ninja traverse a jagged environment.

Aiden now was at the Climbing Wall. He placed both of his hands on the holds and planted his feet on the lower holds.

With a simple move Aiden tossed himself up and cleared about a third of the wall. He then carried himself all the way to the top, grabbing one hold after another.

The time hit 51 seconds and Aiden hit the bell at the top.

Aiden had just shattered the old record by more than a minute and a half. The gym let out another roar. Louder than the one from earlier with Alayna.

Alayna however wasn’t sour about this. On the contrary she cheered at the success that Aiden had. Maria looked over at her thinking that Alayna was going to have a defeated look on her face.

“Hey, you can’t be cheering. You said that he couldn’t do it in under a minute.” Maria said to Alayna.

“Why can’t I? I celebrate any display of Human Physical Accomplishment. Are you sour when you watch the Olympics?” Alayna asked Maria.

Maria turned away from Alayna.

“Yet again Angeal shows why he is the number one student in the school.” Silvia said with a smile on her face.

The Seniors walked up to Aiden as he was returning. “That was impressive, actually that’s an understatement, that was an exemplary performance kid. Have you thought about joining our High School next year, we would love you. With your ability you are guaranteed a spot on any Varsity Team. And with four years in Varsity it is certain that you would receive a full ride scholarship at any University in the Country. Heck, maybe even the world.” The Senior Guy said to Aiden.

Aiden looked over at Maria. 

“Ahem, where was my offer?” Maria asked the Seniors.

“You weren’t able to pass the Obstacle Course, so sadly you won’t be getting an offer.” The Senior said to Maria.

“Well then Angeal won’t be going to your school then.” Maria responded.

“This is ultimately his decision.” The Senior Girl said to Maria.

“Thank you for the offer, but I’ll have to decline on that basis.” Aiden said to the Senior Guy.

“Well that sucks, but if you change your mind by the end of the school year just send us an email and you’ll be enrolled.” The Senior Guy said to Aiden.

They recorded Aiden’s name. 

Aiden and Maria then walked away from the course. “That was so cool Aiden, none of them could believe their eyes. Of course I always believed in you, afterall you are my very own Corporal.” Maria said to Aiden as they walked through the gym.

“That was just about on the edge of Human Capability, if I went any faster it probably would have raised an alarm to study me.” Aiden responded to Maria.

Alayna then rushed in front of Maria.

“Why’d you stop Angeal from going to that High School? That is one of the most, if not the most elite of Athletic High Schools on Earth!” Alayna said to Maria.

“It’s obvious, since I wasn’t given an offer, Angeal didn’t get an offer. It’s just that simple.” Maria responded.

“If all of Angeal’s offers depend on you then he is going to get placed in a school way below his capabilities. Maybe you shouldn’t be so selfish and actually let him live his life to the fullest.” Alayna said to Maria.

Maria then became frustrated. Aiden walked in front of Maria.

“I don’t mind it, wherever I go I will always be at my peak. I plan to do that with Maria as my Best Friend.” Aiden responded.

“But think about it, Angeal, this is High School we are talking about. Sure, Maria is your best friend now, but what you’ve known her for a year. You have four whole years to make new best friends.” Alayna said to Aiden.

“You heard his answer. He is staying with me.” Maria responded to Alayna and stuck her tongue out.

“No wonder everyone speaks badly about you.” Alayna said to Maria.

“At least I will be remembered. I didn’t even know your name until today.” Maria quickly responded.

Silvia walked up to the three. “I agree with Alayna that Angeal should be going to a school that matches his ability, and not one limited by Maria. But I don’t think it should be the Blackbear Mountains High School. It should be the River Valley High School where he will be able to use his intelligence for the betterment of Humanity.” Silvia said to the group.

“Ah! You both are more annoying than usual. Whichever High School I am going to is the one Angeal is going to. Now you both can shut your mouths about it and just accept it.” Maria said to the two.

“You don’t tell me to shut up.” Alayna said to Maria.

“Shut up!” Maria said again to Alayna.

“Easy Tiger, we don’t want you to get suspended, that’s going to kill your chances.” A fellow athlete came and grabbed Alayna.

Alayna shook his hand off of her wrist. “If you are really his best friend then you will let him grow.” Alayna said walking back over to the Blackbear Mountains High School Booth.

Silvia, Maria and Aiden were now standing together.

“Showed her.” Maria said with a smile.

“I think what she was saying is right though. But with the wrong conclusion. Maybe Angeal will get lucky and end up in a good school despite all the efforts you make to prevent that from happening.” Silvia said as she left and joined the prep students.

“Jealous, that’s all they are. They wanted you to go to their schools so that they can get close to you without me around.” Maria said to Aiden.

“That may be part of the reason. But I think they were also genuinely trying to think about what was best for me.” Aiden said to Maria.

“What? You want to go to one of those schools?” Maria looked up at Aiden with disbelief.

“Of course not, I am a heavenly being, I am only at school because you are at school. So going somewhere without you is a pointless adventure.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“See, so ultimately I was right. How about we leave this place and go to some breakfast restaurant in another state.” Maria asked Aiden.

“I’m pretty sure they are keeping track of Attendance while we are here, so we can’t just leave.” Aiden said to Maria, looking at all the teachers around.

Kayla was looking around the corner, hiding behind one of the booths. She had overheard the conversation that Alayna, Maria and SIlvia were having.

“All these witches are trying to force my boyfriend away from me. My heart aches to no end.” Kayla said watching Aiden talk to Maria.

Kayla then thought of an idea.

“For me to ensure that Angeal isn’t taken from me, all I have to do is get him into a school I am going to. And since I didn’t do so well academically, it’ll be easy to get that witch into the school too.” Kayla thought to herself as she chewed her hat with excitement.

In the distance, at the Liberty Theatre High School Booth, Alvin was putting on a performance. He was performing “Mark Twain Tonight.” as a solo act. Alvin exaggerated every movement he made and his voice carried across the wide gym.

Maria and Aiden watched Alvin perform trying to pass the time.

The performance seemed to be more of a stand-up act that only those who understood Mark Twain would enjoy. So the Sophomores and Juniors of the High School enjoyed the performance. But the other students were a bit bored.

Maria in particular did not find it enjoyable at all.

Kayla walked up to Maria. She was nervous in front of her.

“Ge… Geo… High.” Kayla was saying slowly.

“Come on, out with it.” Maria said to Kayla.

Kayla then covered her mouth.

Maria placed her hand on her face. “Is everyone just trying to annoy me today.” Maria said to herself.

Maria and Aiden then went off to another booth.

“Geological Society High School has open enrollment right now.” Kayla said after the two of them had already left. “Darn, she took him away too quickly.” Kayla thought to herself.

It was now time for Lunch.

Maria left the Gym as fast as she could and Aiden followed behind her.

“Finally we can leave!” Maria called out.

“Did any of the schools interest you?” Aiden asked Maria again.

“Nope, I knew they wouldn’t. Guess I will just go to the local High School around here.” Maria said to Aiden.

“If there were one you were interested in I could probably get you into it. It should be as simple as when I got you fifth place in the Finals last year.” Aiden said to Maria. 

“Wow, that was almost a year ago. Time sure did pass by fast, didn’t it?” Maria said, remembering how things were back then.

“Well, you now know a lot more people. So that’s a notable change.” Aiden said, smiling at Maria.

“Yea, that also makes everything more annoying.” Maria responded quickly. “Okay Aiden, take me to eat something that is so meaty and harty that it would make you throw up.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Why’s that? Are you upset with me?” Aiden asked Maria.

“No, I’m just so annoyed, I need to rip something with my teeth!” Maria said to Aiden attempting to bite him. 

Aiden moved away playfully from Maria.

“Okay, then I will take us to a BBQ fair in the South.” Aiden said to Maria.

They both left from the front and flew off to the meal.

The students were in the cafeteria. Aiden and Maria’s seats were empty as usual during the first half of lunch.

“Everyone could hear that argument you were having with Maria earlier. It sucks that she isn’t letting him go to a worthy school.” Rebecca said to Silvia.

“Angeal is a smart guy, if he really wanted to, he could find a way to go to any school he wanted.” Silvia responded by eating her salad.

“You think he is some sort of Ninja, or maybe an Assassin, who was sent to our school to take out Maria. Maybe that’s why he has all those skills and sticks by her. He is just waiting for a moment to strike.” Issac said, shoving his spoon into his pudding.

“An assassin? No, he probably just has such a crush on her that being away for even a second would make his weak little heart break.” Joshua said, making fun of Aiden.

“You and I both know that Angeal is anything but weak.” Rebecca responded to Joshua. “Now you on the other hand. You can hit the gym maybe even once.” She said looking at Joshua’s weak arms.

“I’m a grower, not a shower. If I wanted to display my strength I could.” Joshua said, displaying his arms.

“I don’t think you used that saying correctly.” Issac said to Joshua.

Silvia was sitting down silently as the boys were discussing amongst themselves.

“What are you thinking about Silvia?” Rebecca asked her.

Silvia was looking over at the table that Maria and Aiden usually sat.

“A sudden wave of melancholy hit me. Maybe I’m just thinking that this is going to be the last two months that we are all like this.” Silvia responded.

“That’s much more sentimental than you usually are. Are you feeling well?” Rebecca asked Silvia.

“Silvia then turned back to her meal. Yes, I am perfectly fine.” Silvia responded in the cold manner that everyone was used to.

The School Counselor was walking through the Lunch room looking for students. She saw Silvia and walked over to her.

The School Counselor handed Silvia a letter. “Congratulations Miss Reiners.” She said in her ear.

“What is this?” Silvia asked.

“It’s an invitation letter.” The School Counselor responded. “Have you seen Mister Heavens or Miss Li around?” The School Counselor asked.

“Oh, Maria and Angeal. They usually don’t show up here until after half of the lunch period is over.” Silvia responded. And she pointed at the table they usually sit at.

“Okay, thank you.” The School Counselor said leaving the cafeteria.

“What was that about?” Joshua asked Silvia.

Silvia opened the envelope and a letter was inside. The edges of the letter were lined with Gold. All it read was. “You’ve been Invited to become an Innovator at ‘The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders’…. . .– ” The rest of the letter was blank.

Silvia flipped it over and didn’t see anything on the back either.

“That can’t be real can it? Don’t you have to be like the daughter of a President or a Billionaire to even apply there?” Joshua asked, looking at the Label on the top.

“It doesn’t say anything else on it. What should I do next?” Silvia said to herself.

Silvia handed Rebecca the letter.

“It’s blank, other than those words.” Rebecca said, trying to see if they missed anything.

“Maybe you have to just wait on them to give you another letter with further instructions.” Issac said looking at the letter.

“Still though, that is unbelievable. That school makes the River Valley High School look like Kindergarten.” Rebecca said to Silvia.

“Well it doesn’t matter if this is all they are going to give me.” Silvia said, retrieving the letter from them.

“I bet it’s some sort of puzzle.” Joshua said, stuffing his mouth with a sandwich. 

“You watch too many movies.” Rebecca responded.

They table then started to discuss again. Silvia looked at the letter one more time. She realized that the dots at the end may not just be for a stylistic show.

“Those could be morse code.” Silvia thought to herself. “H, E, A, T…” Silvia read the dots. “Ah, so that’s what it’s saying.”

Silvia finished putting it into her backpack and joined the discussion.

Alayna waited by the door of the cafeteria for Maria and Aiden to return.

The two walked by the entrance and to their table. They sat down and Alayna sat down immediately after them.

“Oh come on, what are you doing here?” Maria said to Alayna.

“I was thinking, maybe I was being a bit rude about him finding a replacement for you just because you’ve known each other for only a year. So I am going to start off by apologizing for that.” Alayna said to Maria.

Maria didn’t say anything back. She just took a bit of her T-Bone. Alayna was looking at her waiting for Maria to accept the apology.

“Well?” Alayna asked.

“What? Just because you apologized doesn’t mean I have to accept it.” Maria said to Alayna.

“Gosh you are troublesome.” Alayna thought to herself holding back her temper. “Well, despite that, I do think you should let Angeal explore his talents more. Since you two are best friends, I’m sure a little distance isn’t going to hurt. Meeting once every few weeks isn’t so bad.” Alayna said to Maria.

“Or, a better option is to just be together, everyday, until I die.” Maria responded.

“I don’t even know why I tried. You can’t change your mind by talking, I can’t appeal to logic, and you are too weak to accept any physical challenge.” Alayna said before Maria interrupted.

“Too weak?! Ah, no. The only reason I didn’t finish the obstacle course was because I slipped. If I didn’t I would have destroyed your record.” Maria said to Alayna.

“Ha, no you would not have. I’m not even going to entertain that since you were so rude.” Alayna said to Maria.

“So you want Angeal to go to that school? Fine, only if you can beat the Mighty Maria in whatever you think you are physically better at!” Maria said aloud to Alayna.

“You can’t be serious. It’s honestly going to be this easy?” Alayna said to Maria.

“Easy for me, no sweat!” Maria responded.

“I would just say a simple 100 meter dash, just to get it over with, but I want to beat you a little. How about Pugil sticks?” Alayna suggested to Maria.

“Easy! When and where!” Maria said practically exacerbated.

“Okay Geez, I’ll ask the Seniors at Blackbear Mountains to set it up for us. So an hour after lunch?” Alayna said.

“Fine, I’ll see you there then.” Maria said. Alayna then left confused by Maria’s confidence.

The students in the cafeteria were also confused. They watched Maria struggle to lift herself up and watched Alayna destroy the course in record time. 

“Why’d you agree to that?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Generals and Battles my dear Corporal. It’s what makes me feel alive.” Maria said, ripping into another piece of meat. “Ah, I feel invincible eating this!” Maria said.

“If you lose, would you actually accept the terms of the deal?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Of course not, but that’s why I won’t lose. You as my Corporal are going to make sure I don’t” Maria said to Aiden with a smirk.

“Oh I get it, so we are going to cheat.” Aiden said to Maria.

“It’s not cheating! I am just using my resources wisely.” Maria responded.

“It’s not that I care too much if it was.” Aiden said to Maria without a slight hint of surprise.

“Ha, so we are on the same page. So whatever this Pugil stick or whatever she said, happens. I want you to control my limbs like a puppet so you can have me win no matter what.” Maria said to Aiden.

“So, simply taking over the control of your body is what you want?” Aiden asked Maria, trying to clarify her meaning.

“No, I want you to control my limbs like a puppet. Not like going into my brain and mind control me. As the General I must maintain full awareness of the battlefield.” Maria said with her arms crossed.

Aiden then controlled Maria’s hand and made her drop the meat she was holding.

“Hey! I was still eating that!” Maria said to Aiden.

“I was showing you what it would feel like.” Aiden responded to Maria’s scolding.

“Well you could have let me know before you did that, what if I was going in for a bite. I could have bit my tongue or something.” Maria said to Aiden, grabbing the T Bone off her plate again.

“You wouldn’t have, I would not have let that happen.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well anyways, if we have more than one round I want to do the first round on my own. Just in case I am actually stronger than her. I want to see if I can win without assistance.” Maria said, chewing on another bite.

“Despite the overwhelming odds against your favour, I won’t say that it is impossible.” Aiden said to Maria.

Aiden and Maria continued to speak strategy to one another. Until the Lunch period was over and the 8th Graders had to return to the gym for the second half of the High School Fair.

Many of the Students had received offers from the schools they were looking into and now spent the rest of the time enjoying the events that the High Schools were putting on at their booths.

Maria was at the other end of the gym stretching. She was feeling a little heavy from all the food she ate.

“Bleh, why didn’t you stop me from eating that much.” Maria said feeling like she was about to throw up.

“Technically I did stop you, and you scolded me for it.” Aiden said to Maria, looking around at the events.

“You need to be more pushy Aiden, just because I tell you not to do something once doesn’t mean you aren’t allowed to try it again.” Maria said to Aiden, reaching down to her toes.

“I’m sure that runs counter to every other order you give me.” Aiden said to Maria.

The prep students found Maria and Aiden.

“Heard that you are going to be fighting Alayna in a short while. You probably don’t stand any chance.” Joshua said to Maria.

“Oh wow, thank you for the motivation. How about you go somewhere and annoy someone else.” Maria responded to Joshua.

“Ouch, sharp.” Joshua said, stepping back from Maria.

Silvia then stepped closer.

“Did the School Counselor talk to you two about something?” Silvia asked.

“No, why would they?” Maria responded.

“Nothing, I was just wondering.” Silvia said. “They probably got a separate offer somewhere else.” Silvia thought to herself.

“It’s Pugil Sticks, right?” Rebecca asked. “Are you worried you are going to get hit in the face?” Rebecca asked with a bit of worry.

“It takes more than some hits to make me worry.” Maria responded. She was now twisted her hips to loosen up her upper body motion.

Silvia then walked away as if she was in her own world.

“Hey, wait up!” Rebecca said following behind Silvia. The rest of the group went after them as well.

In the distance the High School Seniors of Blackbear Mountains High School were setting up the Pugil Stick match between Maria and Alayna.

There was a single beam that was padded. One half of the beam was blue and the other was red.

The sticks were also padded and were covered with red and blue cushions. The Seniors brought out padded helmets and vests. Alayna was over there trying to make sure they fit her properly.

“Looks like they are about to begin.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria finished her stretches and tried to look over. “Are those Red and Blue things the sticks we will be using?” Maria asked Aiden.

“It seems like it. Alayna tried a few swings with them, so I can only assume so much.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Make one for me, I want to try it out.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden created a Pugil stick for Maria and handed it to her. Maria swung it slowly, but wasn’t feeling comfortable with the weight being completely on either end.

“This is awkward.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Looks like the goal will be to knock your opponent off of the platform using the sticks. So it’ll take a lot of balance and proper timing.” Aiden informed Maria of his observation.

“Knocking her off is going to be easy. I’ll be like one of those 2D fighting games.” Maria said with a smirk on her face.

“I suppose it is quite similar to that.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Well, I’m ready. So let’s head on over Corporal.” Maria said to Aiden. The two walked towards the Pugil Stick arena.

Alayna watched Maria walk up. “Ha, I’m surprised you actually showed up. Guess you aren’t all talk.” Alayna mocked Maria.

“That’s right. Also I backup everything that I say with results. So when I say that I am going to win, that is a promise.” Maria said to Alayna.

“There’s a fine line between Arrogance and Confidence and an even finer one between Bravery and Stupidity. I wonder which line you fall on.” Alayna said to Maria gesturing for her to come up to the arena.

“Okay Aiden, remember the plan.” Maria whispered to him.

“Don’t worry, I got it.” Aiden responded.

Maria and Alayna stood in front of the two Seniors.

They gave Maria and Alayna each a helmet and a padded vest. “Okay you two, this is for fun. If you start getting aggressive we will end it and report you two to your principal.” The Senior said to them.

Maria gave him a thumbs up.

“It won’t last long enough for it to get to that point.” Alayna responded. Maria looked at her with a grimace on her face.

The arena was surrounded by fellow students. They all overheard the challenge while in the cafeteria. They were cheering on who they wanted to win.

Alayna and Maria climbed up on the beam and were given their respective sticks.

“Best two out of three wins. You win if you knock your opponent off of the beam, or if your opponent quits. Always hold the stick with two hands. Maintain control of your sticks. And have fun.” The Senior said to the two.

Maria and Alayna looked directly at each other.

“You could just give up now, any normal person would take my view on the situation between you and Angeal.” Alayna said to Maria.

“It sucks that your view is missing the valuable information that Angeal wants to be wherever I am. So I’m not stopping him from doing what he wants.” Maria responded to Alayna stepping closer to her.

“What? Are you blackmailing him or something, or is this some sort of Slave to Master type of relationship. Because I doubt Angeal would genuinely be attracted to someone as unremarkable as you are.” Alayna said to Maria.

Maria then swung her Pugil at Alayna and Alayna simply stepped back and the momentum of the stick nearly made Maria fall off the platform.

The audience all gasped at the near loss for Maria. Maria regained her balance.

“I am remarkable, you are the one who has no friends and wants to take mine.” Maria said to Alayna trying to regain her breath.

“How are you already out of breath, you are much more out of shape then I thought.” Alayna said before swiping her Pugil Stick underneath Maria and sending her off of the beam.

Maria fell onto the cushioned ground below and the crowd cheered.

“That’s 1 to 0.” The Senior said letting everyone in the crowd know the score.

“No one actually likes you Maria. I was even trying to be nice to you earlier but you are just a spiteful person.” Alayna said to Maria, as Maria was dusting herself off.

“I don’t need anyone to like me but my best friend.” Maria responded.

“I saw you a few times today, and you have several potential friends all over the place. There were the University Prep Students, the Glamour Trio, Katherine, and even the Bookworm girl. But I bet you never even considered having them join your group because you were so obsessed with preventing anyone from getting close to Angeal.” Alayna lectured to Maria.

“You’re speaking as if you somehow are in a morally higher position than me. As if you’d beaten me already. Well, theGeneral does not lose. I only allowed you to get that first point so that I could destroy your confidence from a higher position.” Maria responded with confidence that no one understood was coming from.

“Do you just live in your own world?” Alayna asked Maria.

Maria and Alayna were on the platform once again. “Round Two, begin!” The Senior said.

“I don’t want to play with you anymore, it’s obvious you don’t listen to anyone but yourself.” Alayna said to Maria coming in to strike her off the platform.

Aiden forced Maria to duck underneath Alayna’s stick, then struck Alayna on the side of her chest.

Alayna nearly lost balance but had a strong enough stance to remain on the platform.

“Wow, she is really sturdy.” Aiden thought to himself.

Alayna stepped back away from Maria. And cautiously watched her.

Maria got up and started laughing. “Haha, I bet you weren’t expecting that! Don’t get overconfident with me!”

“That was only a lucky shot, I think you are the one who is getting overconfident, Miss I already fell once.” Alayna responded to Maria’s taunt.

Aiden then had Maria move towards Alayna. Alayna struck at Maria but Aiden had Maria block the impact causing her to still remain balanced.

Maria then spun on the platform and went for Alayna’s feet. Alayna jumped over Maria’s strike and went for Maria’s head. Aiden had Maria bend back and narrowly dodge the strike.

Maria then let out several strikes at Alayna, and Alayna was able to handle them without losing balance. “Come on, just fall.” Maria said, trying to get Alayna to fall.

Alayna jumped over behind Maria and went to strike Maria from behind.

Aiden had Maria step forward and turn towards Alayna.

Alayna then went on the offensive pushing Maria again to the other end of the platform as Aiden supported Maria from falling.

Due to Alayna’s overwhelming strength against Maria, Aiden couldn’t use Maria’s muscles to generate enough power to knock over Alayna.

The back and forth was looking like a stalemate between the two. 

Maria was dodging the hits Alayna sent out, and Maria hit Alayna but couldn’t generate the force to knock her over.

The entire gym watched the performance of the two.

Alayna was beginning to tire out from swinging at the air when Maria dodged.

“Looks like you are the one tired this time.” Maria mocked.

“I still have my second wind, so don’t get cocky.” Alayna said, catching her breath.

Maria then rushed towards Alayna as she was exhausted.

“Got you.” Alayna said as she saw an opening to knock Maria off.

Alayna struck Maria on the side of her abdominal causing her to completely lose footing on the platform.

Maria began to fall off the platform. Aiden watched Maria about to fail and he controlled Maria’s arms to use the Pugil stick to grab the platform and carry Maria back over. This motion caused the platform to rotate with Maria’s weight.

The flipping of the platform knocked Alayna off and left Maria on the underside having landed on her chest.

“What was that?! That was all luck!” Alayna said to Maria.

“That wasn’t luck, that was Pure Talent.” Maria responded with a cocky smile.

Alayna then rushed back up to get on the platform. “Okay, that one to one, last round.” Alayna said quickly.

She then got her Pugil stick ready.

“Okay, that’s enough for you two. This is supposed to be fun.” The Senior said stopping their match.

“Aww, but I was just about to win!” Maria said to the Senior.

“You aren’t going to turn these fun recreational events into a street fight.” The Senior said to Maria and Alayna.

“Okay, I understand.” Alayna said disappointed. “Looks like it’s a tie.” Alayna said to Maria.

“No, no ties! Rock, Paper, Scissors right now to declare the winner.” Maria said to Alayna, as she held rock in her hand.

“You can’t be serious.” Alayna responded looking at the fire in Maria’s eyes.

“Yes I am serious.” Maria said with her hand still out.

“I already said what I needed to say, if you don’t want people to question your friendship with Angeal, maybe start treating him like a friend.” Alayna said to Maria.

Maria still had a grimace on her face.

“Whatever.” Alayna said, extending her fist.

Both of them said, “Rock, Paper, Scissors, Shoot.” 

Aiden saw that Alayna was choosing Rock, and that Maria was about to throw out Scissor, so he forced Maria’s hand to become Paper.

“Ha, I won! In your face! I was right!” Maria cheered, having thrown Paper out to Alayna’s Rock.

“Whatever, I’m not bothered about losing a child’s game.” Alayna said leaving the area.

A crowd gathered around Alayna celebrating her domination in the Pugil Stick Match. No one was coming to Maria.

“Looks like she has gathered a few fans.” Aiden said looking at the crowd around Alayna.

“You both performed as Goddesses of the Colosseum. Mine eyes were raptured by the eloquent talent of Combat Strategy, Agility and Strength.” Alvin was saying to Maria.

“Thanks I guess?” Maria said to Alvin.

“I don’t know how you managed to pull off what you did that second round.” Silvia said, walking up to Maria.

Alvin saw Silvia and immediately backed away.

“Do you feel like challenging me now?” Maria asked Silvia.

“No, I just came back from the Office. And picked up these.” Silvia said, handing Maria and Aiden the same letters she received from the School Counselor.

“She was looking for you earlier, so I figured that I would just pick it up for you.” Silvia said to Aiden and Maria.

“What are they?” Maria asked.

“It’s for a High School, that’s all I can tell you though.” Silvia said to Maria.

“I know you have what it takes Angeal, and for Maria…” Silvia paused a bit. “Good luck.” Silvia said leaving the two.

Maria and Aiden stood in the gym and looked at their letters.

“You’ve been Invited to become an Innovator at ‘The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders’.- -.-. .. -..” Read Aiden’s letter.

“You’ve been Invited to become an Innovator at ‘The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders’..- …-” Read Maria’s letter.

“Oh, looks like we didn’t have to go to this dumb event anyways.” Maria said to Aiden looking at the letter.

Aiden looked closer at the letters. He was able to read that he said Acid in morse code. But he was able to see the hidden image in the blank area of the page. It was an image of a cat. It had a wide grin. It read: “Most everyone’s mad here.”; “You may have noticed that I’m not all there myself.”

Aiden recognized that this was from the book ‘Alice in Wonderland, and noticed that the stripes of the cat were missing. But the missing pattern was in a pattern that resembled that of a barcode.

“So the International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders, is that a good school?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Who knows. We can find out together.” Aiden said to Maria. Maria grinned and started walking.