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.

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 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 2: Episode One

New Dorms and Roommates

Maria’s latest Birthday party was held at a skating rink. Her invited guests were Leanne, Angel, and of course her family which organized it. Now they were gathered around to see Maria unwrap her gifts.

“Oh wow, these are some big boxes this year!” Maria said, looking at the three large boxes in front of her. There was one wrapped with red wrapping paper and had golden Chinese characters on it.

“You should probably open grandma’s and grandpa’s presents first.” Allison said to Maria.

Maria looked back at her. “I was going to do that anyway.” Maria said to Allison, grabbing the gift.

Leanna got closer to see what was in the box.

Maria started pulling items out of it. She first pulled out an advanced graphing calculator, then she pulled out a backpack that was filled with rulers, erasers, calligraphy pens, fine paper and other stationary items. Then at the bottom of the box was a red bracelet with gold bells on it. There was a note attached to it.

“Congratulations Ma Rui, we heard the news about you getting into the Top School in the World. We are proud of you! Happy Birthday Sweetie!” The note read.

“Oh, so all of this is for school.” Maria looked at the items feeling a bit disappointed.

Maria’s dad took a picture of Maria as she was looking at the gifts. He looked at the picture he took and Maria looked annoyed.

“Come on Sport. This is going to your grandparents, give them a big smile!” Maria’s dad said as he went to take another picture.

Maria looked at the camera and gave a fake smile.

Maria’s dad looked at the image again. “I guess that’s good enough.” He said, as he then went to take more pictures.

Leanne then pushed her present closer to Maria. “Open mine next!” Leanne said to Maria.

Maria grabbed Leanne’s box and inside was an MP3 player. And it had a ton of songs programmed into it that Leanne liked to listen to.

“Oh wow! You took all that time to put music on this!?” Maria asked Leanne.

“Yep! Now when you go to your new school you will have a mixtape that can keep you company. Oh and a few of my personal songs are on there… you could delete those if you find them annoying.” Leanne said to Maria.

“Guess I will have to listen to it first.” Maria joked with Leanne. “I’m just kidding.” Maria laughed.

And now the final large gift on the table. It was the box that was marked from Angel.

Aiden stood close to the table as Maria’s dad wanted him to do as Maria opened his gift.

Inside was a personal drone with a camera attached to it and a miniature screen. Leanne got close to the box too, wondering what it was.

Maria lifted it up.

“Cool! It’s like a mini helicopter!” Maria said looking at the gift.

Leanne grabbed the controller from the box. “Look Maria, you can control it with this!” Leanne said to Maria showing off the remote.

Maria grabbed the remote and tried to get it to move. But nothing was happening.

“You need to turn on both the drone and the remote for it to start.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria flipped over the drone and found the on switch. She then powered up the drone. It made a loud buzzing sound as it was the propellers were getting up to speed.

The skating rink people looked over at the table to see what was happening.

The drone then went into the air. Maria’s dad took pictures of it since it was the first time anyone has seen a drone.

As the drone was moving around hectically the party members ducked for their safety.

Maria started laughing as she started targeting Allison with the drone.

Before it could hit Allison, Maria’s dad grabbed it.

“Okay Champ, that’s enough fun with that. You can play with it more later.” Maria’s dad smiled, feeling a bit exhausted.

Maria hugged both Leanne and Aiden, who was Angel at the time, for their gifts.

The family then sang Happy Birthday and Maria stood in front of her candles.

She closed her eyes. “I wish, that this year is even more eventful than last!” Maria thought to herself as she blew out her candles.

Everyone cheered and celebrated Maria’s Birthday.

A few weeks have passed since then. Maria, and Aiden received letters of confirmed pickup for their requested departure date and had prepared for their trip to Pasadena, California, for their new Dorms.

Maria waited in front of her home as her family stood in front of the house seeing Maria off. 

A bus came and it was a fancy, black coloured box with tinted windows. It had a place underneath for your luggage. Inside there was a bathroom, and TVs attached to the seats.

Maria started walking to the bus dragging her luggage behind her. The Bus driver assisted with putting the items underneath.

Maria then looked back at her family. They were waving to her. Maria started to feel emotional, but didn’t want to show them her tears, so she smiled and waved one more time before getting on the bus quickly.

“Bye Bye Sweetie! Hope you have a great time!” Maria’s mom said.

“Way to go Sport! You are going to do great, show them what the Li family can do!” Maria’s dad yelled out.

“Bye Maria! Bring back something cool!” Allison said as the bus started leaving.

Maria watched as she was getting further and further from her house. She sat back on her seat in the empty bus.

She exhaled, and turned on the TV in front of her.

The Bus then picked up Silvia next.

Silvia’s family waved Goodbye to her, and Charles helped put Silvia’s luggage under the bus with the driver. Silvia didn’t get as emotional as Maria did, but it was obvious that she was trying to remain composed.

Silvia got on the bus and said Maria. She looked around for Aiden.

“Is Aiden in the bathroom, or hasn’t been picked up yet?” Silvia asked Maria.

Maria was focused on the Movie. “He hasn’t been picked up yet. So you don’t have to keep looking.” Maria responded to Silvia.

Silvia sat in her seat and took out a book to read.

Maria looked over. “You know you can use these screens to watch a movie. You will get to read books when we get to the school.” Maria said to Silvia, showing her the screen.

“Obviously I know that, but unlike you, I actually find reading books entertaining.” Silvia responded.

“Okay.” Maria said, nearly mocking Silvia. Maria went back to watching her movie.

The bus then went to Aiden’s house. Aiden didn’t bring any luggage, and there was no one to say goodbye to him when he left.

Aiden simply got on the bus and sat next to Maria.

“Finally they picked you up!” Maria said to Aiden.

“Yes, I suppose because I live the furthest away from the metropolitan area.

“Hello Angeal!” Silvia said standing up to talk to Aiden.

“Hello Silvia.” Aiden responded.

Silvia sat down next in the seat across the aisle from Aiden. Maria looked over at Silvia with a grimace.

“Hey Angeal, we should switch seats. I have already got to look out the window enough.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Oh, sure.” Aiden responded.

“Wait, if you want to look out the windows you can just go to another seat. That way Maria doesn’t have to give up hers.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“That is indeed correct as well.” Aiden responded.

“But you are already here, so no reason to do all of that.” Maria said, hopping over Aiden’s legs and sitting on his lap to make him scoot over.

Aiden then went to the window seat. Maria then looked at Silvia and laughed.

Silvia brought her book back up to her face and continued to read. “So annoying.” Silvia thought to herself.

The bus ride took a few hours. The group approached a large greenery covered campus. It had a large white building in the center and several spots for airplanes and helicopters to land. The school was surrounded by a large gate and outside of the gates were several mansions.

Maria got on Aiden to look out the window at the sight.

“Wow! This is awesome!” Maria said, looking at all the gadgets that were being tested by the upperclassmen.

“This school must have quite the budget.” Aiden said, looking at all the state of the art equipment on campus. Several of the students around were as tall if not taller than Aiden. He no longer seemed out of place.

The bus then stopped in front of a modern dorm. 

Then a school administrator got on the bus.

“Welcome to The International Innovators and Developers High School for Global Leaders’ Campus, or as we say here, Indiglobe. I will be your guide Sherry Alimos.” Sherry said with excitement.

Maria got excited seeing Sherry introduce them to the area.

“Now we should have Maria Li, Silvia Reiners and Angeal Heavens, correct?” Sherry asked.

“That’s right!” Maria responded.

“That’s great to hear. Okay, let’s get you all off of this cramped bus and into the sunlight!” Sherry said getting off of the bus. Maria, Silvia and Aiden followed behind.

There were a few other students who were already waiting. Some turned to look at the group.

Some groups had already begun to form. A group was knee deep in a discussion about what could be the source of mass for elementary particles, while others talked about the use of Stem Cells for the growth of Human Organs.

Aiden, Maria and Silvia just stood watching.

“Hey hey! My name is Ventus! What are your names?” Ventus, a tall student with relatively wild hair, and dark eyes asked the group.

Maria turned around to look at him. She then looked up. “Wow, you are tall. Are you the same age as us?” Maria asked Ventus.

“I was born on June 10th. So I just turned 12.” Ventus said to the group.

“Wow, so you are almost 2 years younger than me!” Maria responded. “Well, my name is Maria. I am the General, and this is my Loyal Corporal Angeal.” Maria said, introducing herself and Aiden.

“Cool, so you’re already a General?! That’s impressive. It usually takes people several decades to get to that rank. Which branch of service are you in?” Ventus asked.

“She’s lying, she’s not a General. Even you could tell that, right?” Silvia said to Ventus.

“I usually give people the benefit of the doubt, after all, look at the school you are in.” Ventus said to Silvia. “So what’s your name?” Ventus asked Silvia.

“My name is Silvia Reiners.” Silvia responded.

“Silvia? Oh that’s cool. Your name is forest in Latin, mine is the wind. So maybe that means we are a good match friendship wise.” Ventus said to Silvia.

“Don’t get your hopes up.” Silvia responded.

“I am a General!” Maria said to Silvia.

“Are you really still on about that?” Silvia said to Maria.

Ventus then started talking to Aiden. “Seems like you got your hands full.” Ventus joked with Aiden.

“I hardly notice.” Aiden responded.

Ventus then looked in Aiden’s eyes. Ventus then gained a small smirk on his face. “I’m sure you don’t, everything probably comes easy to you eh?” Ventus said to Aiden, as he hit him on his shoulder as if they were friends.

Aiden looked at where Ventus touched and seemed to have gotten slightly annoyed.

“Okay everyone, follow me, as I give you a tour of campus!” Sherry said as the freshmen got up and followed her.

Maria, Aiden and Silvia all walked together as they looked around at the campus.

“Can you believe it Aiden, we are actually here!” Maria whispered to Aiden.

“Yes, who would have thought that you went from having nearly a failing GPA to this.” Aiden joked with Maria.

“Hey! I wasn’t that bad!” Maria said, punching Aiden’s arm.

“Are you usually left out of conversations?” Ventus asked Silvia.

Silvia looked up at Ventus then turned away. “I choose not to participate in most of their conversations.” Silvia responded.

“I understand that. But you know, it’s nice to have something familiar when you are exploring a new area.” Ventus said to Silvia.

“Then where are your friends? Do you not have any?” Silvia said to Ventus with a rather hostile tone. But Ventus ignored how it came off.

“I came here alone, I introduced myself to everyone here. They seem to take to me well. But I don’t want to disturb people already in conversations.” Ventus said to Silvia walking next to her.

“Then could you not disturb me either, thanks.” Silvia said to Ventus. Ventus then tilted his head as if he was wearing a hat. 

“Sure thing, I won’t bother you.” Ventus then moved away from Silvia with a disappointed look on his face.

Maria looked back and saw Ventus’ face. “Hey Aiden, what do you think of that Ventus guy?” Maria asked him.

“He’s young, and very excited. Could be at times annoying.” Aiden responded.

“You found him annoying? That’s like the first time I heard you describe someone like that!” Maria was surprised that Aiden actually had an opinion about someone.

“I’m not quite sure, I just know I’d rather not spend too much time with him.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh, okay. Then I guess I won’t offer him the rank of a Private then.” Maria said to Aiden.

They all continued to walk and be shown around.

Sherry brought everyone back to the dorms.”Okay, all of your items have been taken up to your new rooms! And you can find out where those are and your roommates on the panel over there!” Sherry pointed to a glass covered box by the elevators.

“I already had a place picked out, I don’t need a dorm room.” A student by the name of Richard said to Sherry.

“All Freshmen have to live in the dorms. Once you become upperclassmen then you can live off campus.” Sherry responded.

“I’ll just have to get my dad to say something about that then.” Richard said, taking out his cell phone.

Maria went over to the list of roommates.

“Maria Li and Silvia Reiners, Room 808.” The line said.

Maria then went to Sherry. “Can I change my roommate? I already decided that I wanted to stay with Angeal Heavens.” Maria asked Sherry.

“Girls and Boys cannot stay in the same dorm room. That’s not to say you can’t visit, you just can’t sleep in the same rooms.” Sherry responded. “And no, you can’t change your roommates. You will get to do that your sophomore year.” 

Maria rolled her eyes. “Out of everyone here, it had to be Silvia.” Maria complained.

“I’m not excited about that either.” Silvia said to Maria.

“Really Father! You can’t let them do that!” Richard said loudly on the phone. He then hung up.

“Well?” Sherry asked.

“I am protesting!” Richard said, crossing his arms. “Who is with me!?” Richard yelled out.

The other students just looked at him. Ventus then touched Richard on the shoulder. “It’s okay, it’s just for one year.” Ventus said. Richard then calmed down.

Richard exhaled. “I guess it is only a year. Let me check who I’m rooming with.” Richard said, going to the box.

The other students were impressed with Ventus. “Thanks, Ventus Marcos, wasn’t it?” Sherry asked.

“Yes it is!” Ventus smiled.

Aiden looked at the panel. “Angeal Heavens and Ventus Marcos, Room 888.” The panel said.

Aiden looked over at Ventus. Ventus noticed Aiden looking at him and waved. Then he gave Aiden a thumbs up. Aiden seemed annoyed.

“Seems like both of us got people we didn’t want.” Maria said to Aiden.

Ventus walked over to the two. “So what’s the name Aiden supposed to be, is that a nickname? Can I call you Aiden?” Ventus said to them.

“How’d you know I call him that?” Maria asked Ventus.

“I heard you saying it when we were taking the tour around campus. At first I was confused because I thought your name was Angeal, but then I assumed it was a nickname.” Ventus smiled at them.

“Well don’t call me that.” Aiden said to Ventus.

Maria was shocked once again. “Aiden, why are you acting like this?” Maria asked with confusion. “Do you really not want him to use that name?” Maria added.

“Of course not.” Aiden responded.

“Okay, then I’ll just call you Angeal. I’ll see you up in our room.” Ventus said walking away and to the elevators.

“Now that he is gone, you can make him forget your name.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then looked over at Ventus and went to erase that memory. Aiden then looked down back at Maria.

“Okay, it’s done.” Aiden responded.

Ventus looked back and smirked at Aiden. Then he went into the elevator.

“Okay! Let’s go check out our rooms!” Maria said to Aiden as she rushed over.

Maria and Aiden entered room 808, where Silvia began to unpack her stuff.

“Hey! I wanted the left side!” Maria yelled out.

“Too bad, you came too slow. So it’s mine.” Silvia responded, continuing to take her stuff out.

Maria then threw her stuff out of her bag and onto the floor. It spread everywhere in the room. 

“What are you doing?” Silvia asked Maria. Some of Maria’s items landed on Silvia’s side of the room.

“What do you think I’m doing, I’m unpacking!” Maria responded, taking out more items. “Corporal, assist me with this.” Maria commanded Aiden.

Aiden walked over and began to fold Maria’s clothes.

“We aren’t in middle school anymore, you can’t just make him do everything for you. This is a fresh start.

“As you can see, Angeal has no problems with it. So you stay on your side with your books, and I’ll stay on my side with Angeal.” Maria said to Silvia.

Silvia, annoyed, took her favourite books out of her bag and placed them on the shelves. She then started playing classical music as she was unpacking.

“Nope! None of that.” Maria said to Silvia.

“I’m on my side of the room. So what’s your problem?” Silvia asked Maria.

“My problem is that your noise is leaking to my side of the room!” Maria responded.

“It’s not noise, it’s music. But I’m not surprised that you don’t recognize it.” Silvia said to Maria as she continued to put things away.

There was a knock on their door.

“Yeah?” Maria called out.

“A group of us are going to eat at the dining hall, I wanted to see if you guys wanted to come?” Ventus asked at the door.

“Nah, I’m good.” Maria responded.

“And what about you?” Ventus asked Silvia.

Silvia looked over at Maria and Aiden. “I’m okay, I have a lot to unpack.” Silvia responded to Ventus.

“Okay, well if you change your mind, that’s where we will be.” Ventus said, closing their door.

“”Are you staying here on purpose just so I can’t claim stuff?” Maria asked Silvia.

“Exactly, I knew that’s what you were thinking. I can skip a meal or two just to make sure you don’t get your way.” Silvia responded to Maria.

Aiden had finished putting away Maria’s clothes and started on making her bed.

Later on that night.

“It’s getting late, Angeal. You should probably return to your room.” Silvia said to Aiden. Silvia was on her bed reading a book. She wanted to take a shower but didn’t want Aiden there to see her change.

“It’s not that late. We just need one more round of cards.” Maria said playing mother may I with Aiden.

“I want to get changed. I can’t if he is in the room.” Silvia said to Maria.

“What? Is there something wrong with your body?” Maria asked.

“He is a guy, guys aren’t supposed to be with girls as they change!” Silvia said to Maria, scolding her.

Maria looked up at Aiden.

“Oh, it never bothered me.” Maria responded.

Aiden then got up. “I’ll just go. It’s obvious she would be uncomfortable.” Aiden said, going to the door.

Maria then pointed at Aiden. “Okay Corporal. Get up bright and Early. We have surveying to do!” Maria said to Aiden.

“Aye Aye.” Aiden responded by shutting the door. Aiden walked down the hall to the male side of the building.

He stood in front of room 888 and entered.

Ventus was sitting on his bed looking up at the ceiling. Aiden walked in and just went over to his side.

Their room was devoid of any decoration. Both Ventus and Aiden brought nothing with them to the school.

Aiden sat on his bed and looked up at the ceiling.

They both were silent for a long time just looking up.

“What are you looking at?” Aiden asked.

“It would seem weird if I told you.” Ventus responded, but in a more melancholic mood.

“I doubt it would be something I don’t know about.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Eh, it probably is. But I’m done.” Ventus said, turning his attention at Aiden. He then put on his smile.

Aiden then looked over at Ventus.

“Seems like we somehow became roommates, pretty lucky eh?” Ventus smiled talking to Aiden.

“If this is considered Lucky, then I’d rather rely on ability.” Aiden responded.

“You must be very confident in your abilities, yeah? Considering you did get into this school and all.” Ventus asked Aiden.

“It wasn’t difficult.” Aiden responded, turning away from Ventus.

“So what did you do to get noticed?” Ventus asked Aiden.

“I made a high capacity storage harddrive that can store more than a terabyte of data.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Wow, over a terabyte. That’s impressive. That type of thing doesn’t start getting mass produced until around 2015.” Ventus responded.

Aiden was confused. “Is that a guess?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Eh, who knows.” Ventus responded. Ventus then went to change the subject. “I think I know something that you don’t know I know.” Ventus said joking with Aiden.

“And what could that be?” Aiden asked Ventus.

“Well if I told you then you would know that I know.” Ventus joked again. “That’s a pretty fun friend group you have there. You seem to be the only one who actually has the capacity to survive here.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“What makes you say that?” Aiden asked.

“That’s a secret of mine.” Ventus smiled. “But I don’t want any of you guys leaving, so I am going to help out as much as I can.” Ventus said to Aiden. He sent out his hand for Aiden to agree.

“That’s not needed.” Aiden responded.

“Wow, you are really confident.” Ventus said, taking back his hand.

“Well, I can do anything.” Aiden said to Ventus in a serious manner.

Ventus then laid down on his bed. Then he turned around to go to sleep. “Well not anything.” Ventus placed the covers over his body. “Eh, Aiden.” Ventus said dozing off.

Aiden looked over at Ventus, wondering how he still knew his name.

Aiden stayed away as he usually did.

The next day came bright and early. Aiden left the room to meet up with Maria.

Some of the other students had gotten up for an early morning jog.

“Wow, these kids sure are motivated.” Maria said to Aiden.

“What would we expect, this is the top school in the world afterall.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“So, how did it feel sleeping away from me? Were you crying of loneliness?” Maria laughed joking with Aiden.

 “Not in the slightest.” Aiden responded.

“How was your roommate? Was he surprised that you never went to sleep?” Maria asked Aiden.

“It didn’t seem like he cared. He went to sleep rather quickly.” Aiden said to Maria. Maria nodded her head.

“Does he have anything weird in the room?” Maria asked Aiden, curious to see what other people’s rooms were like.

“Ventus didn’t bring anything with him here. So our room is empty.” Aiden explained to Maria.

“Empty? He did the same thing you did? How does he have fun? He seems like such an entertaining person, it’s hard to think that he doesn’t have anything.” Maria noticed that the campus had an artificial river running through it.

“When I entered he was just looking at the ceiling, there was nothing there.” Aiden told Maria.

“Maybe he was gazing into another world, ha!” Maria laughed, making fun of the fact that Aiden couldn’t see what he saw.

“I doubt that.”  Aiden responded.

“Are you curious to know what he is doing now? He could be on your side of the room just smelling it or something.” Maria tried to creep Aiden out.

“No, I’m not curious.” Aiden responded.

“Come on, it’s a new person. You aren’t even a little curious?” Maria tried to get Aiden to budge.

“It seems like you want to know, so I can check for you.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Yeah, do recon!” Maria excitedly said. Aiden then went invisible and flew to the room.

Ventus was sitting on his bed. He was looking at the wall. Ventus then turned towards the window quickly. He looked at where Aiden was and squinted his eyes.

Aiden was confident that Ventus couldn’t see him. Ventus continued to look at the window until Aiden left.

Aiden came back to Maria.

“Well?” Maria asked.

“He was just sitting, staring at the wall, then he started staring out the window.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh! So he saw you?” Maria asked.

“Of course not.” Aiden responded.

“I don’t know. It seems like he did.” Maria joked.

Aiden then thought to himself. Then he started talking to Maria. “Right before he went to sleep he mumbled my name.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That’s weird. Why would he do that?” Maria said feeling creeped out.

“I don’t mean that he mumbled ‘Angeal’, he mumbled ‘Aiden’.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria’s face was surprised. “Oh! Wow! I thought you cleared his memory.” Maria asked.

“I did clear it, he should not have known my name.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, he probably overheard us talking again, like he did last time.” Maria said to Aiden.

The two walked some more around campus. When they were returning a batch of students were at the front. Silvia was off to the side.

“Hey roomie! Do you want to jump in a game of kickball for a little exercise before breakfast!” Ventus asked Aiden.

“Kickball!? I haven’t played that in years!” Maria excitedly responded.

“Then come on and join, so far it’s 8 vs 8.” Ventus said to Maria.

“Then yeah, let me get in.” Maria said to Ventus. “Corporal, you are joining too.” Maria said to Aiden.

“That makes 9 vs 9. I think we can start.” A student named Keith said as the group started walking. Silvia followed behind.

“You’re actually going to play?” Maria asked Silvia.

“Ventus caught me as I was looking for you guys. He said that you would join the game, so I decided to just wait.” Silvia responded.

“Ah, so you just wanted to hang out with us. Looks like you can’t get us out of your head!” Maria laughed at Silvia.

“You’re so annoying.” Silvia responded.

The group approached the field and it looked like it was being used by a group of sophomores.

“Darn it, it seems like we were a little too late.” Keith said kicking the dirt.

“So what now? Do we just want to search for another field?” Joyce asked the group.

Maria then looked up at Aiden. “Get them off of the field, Aiden.” Maria said.

“I suppose I can just cause some water to soak them then they would leave the field.” Aiden responded.

“Sure, do that.” Maria responded.

Ventus had already begun walking back. “It’s no problem. They agreed to go ahead and eat breakfast and then have the field after us for the rest of the day.” Ventus said to the group.

“Cool, looks like we are still good to go!” Keith said, running out to the field.

The sophomores left the field, and the freshmen went on.

“How’d he do that?” Maria asked.

“He might just be exceptionally good at Politics. I didn’t ask him yesterday.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Okay, let’s pick the team leaders. How about the two tallest guys in class!?” Keith asked the group.

The freshmen looked around and agreed that would be the most fair method to select, since no one knows each other’s physical abilities yet.

So Aiden and Ventus stepped forward to the front.

Keith had a coin in his hand he was going to flip. “Okay, call it in the air Angeal.” Keith said as he flipped the coin.

The coin was in the air and Aiden calculated what it was going to land on.

“Heads.” Aiden said.

A subtle wind then came and blew the coin off its rotation. Now it was going to land on tails. The coin landed on the ground with tails.

“So that means Ventus can decide to pick first or second.” Keith gestured to Ventus.

“I’ll pick first.” Ventus grinned at Aiden.

“Sure.” Aiden responded.

Ventus looked at everyone in the freshmen class.

“Aiden is going to select Maria first, maybe I should select her just to take away that option.” Ventus thought to himself.

Ventus then clamped his hands together. “I pick Maria Li.” Ventus said, pointing at Maria.

Maria lifted up both of her hands to decline. “Oh, I wanted to be on Angeal’s team.” Maria responded to Ventus.

“Surely one game on different teams isn’t going to put too much of a strain on your rock solid relationship, don’t you think?” Ventus asked Maria.

“There’s nothing Ventus can say that would get Maria to go to his team.” Aiden thought to himself.

“That’s true, but…” Maria was responding before Ventus interjected.

“If you really don’t want to join my team then I can select anyone else, just wanted to give you this opportunity to see what you are all about, General.” Ventus said to Maria.

Maria then smirked. “You’re right. A General should demonstrate their capabilities even without their subordinates.” Maria said with a giant grin on her face looking at Aiden.

Aiden watched Maria go to Ventus’ side. “He’s good.” Aiden thought to himself. “However, he is still Human, so this game is already a win for my side.” Aiden thought as he looked at the others he could choose from.

Aiden calculated the strength of the remaining players and selected them accordingly. Ventus selected seemingly at random.

Aiden’s team consisted of: Jerry Terrell, John Lynn, Zofia Johns, David Shannon, Antonio Moore, Paul Nettleton, Joyce Smith, Gary Khan, and himself.

Ventus’ team consisted of: Luetta Todd, Tammy Crabtree, Keith Johnson, Steve Martinez, Steven Milligan, Joanne Coyce, Maria Li, Silvia Reiner, and himself.

“That looks good. Since I got to pick first, you guys get to kick first. Good luck.” Ventus said to Aiden.

Aiden then went to the in field.

Ventus’ Team huddled together to discuss a game plan.

“They have Angeal on their team, so he is going to be their best player. We just needs to make sure we focus on him.” Maria said to Ventus.

“I agree, we all went to the same middle school. Angeal is physically impressive.” Silvia added.

“That’s good to know. If that’s the case then when he’s up I will get closer to the plate.” Ventus said to the group.

“How’s that going to work?” Maria asked.

“Trust me, it will.” Ventus smiled.

“I think you might be underestimating Angeal.” Maria responded.

“I would never underestimate anyone.” Ventus said. “As for the line up. Luetta, as an aspiring Mechanic I would like you to be our first pitcher.” Luette nodded her head. Ventus looked over at Tammy. “Tammy the politician, you can be a shortstop. That’ll require quick and calculated decision making in uncertain situations. That’s perfect for you.” Ventus said to her.

Ventus placed his team out this way for the rest of them. Maria was placed in the outfield due to her fast acceleration and stamina. And Silvia was placed on second base, a location that usually would be run past quickly, but when the bases are loaded is a vital point to prevent scores.

Aiden allowed his team to step up to the plate whenever they were comfortable.

Luetta had the bright red ball in her hand. She set up to begin to roll it. Gary Khan was the first one to kick.

Luetta rolled the ball and Gary Khan missed the first kick. “That’s strike one.” Luetta said, taunting Gary.

“I’m just rusty.” Gary responded.

Luetta then rolled the ball again. And again Gary missed. “That’s strike two!” Luetta called out. Gary then started to get frustrated.

“Come on, just calculate where it’s going to be.” Gary thought to himself.

“Now he should be the most concentrated on trying to kick the ball. So if I make it bouncy then he won’t notice it and kick it at its earliest point, which would send the ball high into the air, allowing plenty of time for someone in the outfield to get under and grab it.” Luetta thought to herself holding the ball.

Luetta then rolled the ball with a lot of bounce.

Gary did not stop the ball and ask for a reroll, he instead kicked it as hard as he could as predicted. The ball went high into the air and Gary began to run to first.

Keith slowly went underneath the ball and caught it. “He’s out!” Keith called out.

Gary got off first and walked back to the infield.

Aiden’s team were able to kick two grounders, loading up first and second base. Now Aiden, who set himself as fourth, was up to kick.

“I’ll just send it near the foul line, nothing too impressive, but enough to get second base to score.” Aiden thought to himself.

Ventus got up close to Aiden, barely five meters from him.

“Well, now launching it high isn’t going to be an option. He will catch it before it even gets out of height range. So I better go for a grounder… though he is close enough to just pick it up and tag me out, then could throw the ball at second and get them out.” Aiden was thinking to himself.

Ventus stared down Aiden. “So roomie, what is going to be your next move?” Ventus asked.

“You do know if I kick it hard you could get hurt.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“You are confident in your abilities, aren’t you?” Ventus smirked at Aiden.

Luetta rolled the ball at Aiden. Aiden decided to kick it as hard as he could without bursting the ball. This way it may move past Ventus before he notices.

Aiden kicked the ball and it was a direct hit. The ball was sent forward at incredible speed. 

“Wow, that’s fast.” Ventus thought to himself seeing Aiden kick the ball. But he placed himself in the direct path and let the ball hit his chest. The ball popped into the air and Silvia ran forward to catch it.

Silvia caught the ball and Aiden was out.

She looked at Aiden confused. “I guess that’s three outs.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“Seems that it is.” Aiden smirked. This was an expression that Silvia did not recognize from Aiden.

Ventus got up with a big red mark on his chest. “Okay Team, now it’s our turn!” The teams switched sides.

“That was a good kick.” Ventus gave Aiden a thumbs up. 

“Wow Aiden! How did you get out!? It’s like he knew exactly what you were going to do.” Maria said to Aiden.

“You’re right. And that’s not the first time it seemed like that.” Aiden responded to Maria.

The Freshmen continued to play their games. Maria got to kick the ball a few times and run through the bases cheering when she crossed home.

Silvia despite her minimal physical skill was able to score, and get the feeling of a successful sporting event.

Each time Aiden or Ventus were up to kick the other would meet them head on to prevent any scoring or play making.

“Score’s 8 to 9 Angeal, if I can get this kick pass you seem like we will win.” Ventus said to Aiden.

“Well that’s unfortunate for you because I am going to catch the ball and that will be 3 outs and the end of the game.” Aiden responded to Ventus.

“That’s not what I see.” Ventus responded again with a smirk.

David Shannon rolled the ball. Aiden watched closely to analyze where Ventus’ foot made contact with the ball.

The ball rolled towards Ventus and Ventus stepped directly down on the ball stopping it completely at home. Then he started running.

This caught Aiden by surprise because the ball didn’t go anywhere. Aiden quickly grabbed the ball and threw it over to first, but by then Ventus had already made his way there. And because the ball was no longer at home, the person on third started running. The person with the ball on first threw the ball to David. David caught and ran to tag out third, but they already crossed.

“Go, go!” Ventus yelled out to Maria who was on second base. She ran to third. David threw the ball over to second base to tag Maria, but she kept on running. Gary threw the ball at Maria, but Maria tripped and the ball went over her head. She got up and continued to run.

Ventus continued to run past second as Aiden’s team were scrabbling to decide who to tag out.

“Throw me the ball.” Aiden said to Antonio. Antonio threw Aiden the ball and Aiden ran after Ventus. Aiden started catching up to Ventus.

Aiden threw the ball quickly at Ventus before he could reach third, knocking him out.

“Got you. That’s three.” Aiden said to Ventus.

“Yeah, seems like you did, but Maria already crossed home.” Ventus smirked. Aiden looked over at the infield. The team was cheering.

“So the score is 10 to 9, We win.” Ventus said getting up from the ground.

“Seems that you did.” Aiden responded.

Maria ran at Aiden. “You see that! I made the final score and won the game despite you being on the other team, Angeal!” Maria said to Aiden.

“You sure did, good job.” Aiden responded.

“That was a great game everyone, let’s go and get some breakfast!” Ventus said to the freshmen.

They all dusted themselves off to go to the meal hall.

Maria, Silvia and Aiden decided that they were going to participate with the group for breakfast.

Ventus walked past Aiden. “So Aiden, how’d you like that?” Ventus quietly said to Aiden.

Aiden watched as Ventus walked past him. He analyzed Ventus to see if he noticed anything. “How does he know?” Aiden thought to himself.

The Freshmen class enjoyed themselves before it was time for classes to begin. They introduced themselves to everyone around and were able to learn about each other’s hobbies.

Aiden for the first time ever was left confused on who the person was that continues to annoy Aiden at every opportunity. What does he know that Aiden doesn’t know he knows?

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.

Angel Misery: Chapter Fifteen

“Lover’s Journey”

It was now that time of year. Of chocolates and romance. The students in the school were well aware of this, nervous feelings filled the halls.

Aiden and Silvia were walking through the hall to their 4th Bell class.

While walking down the halls Silvia bumped into a girl who wore thick circular classes and seemed extremely timid and clumsy. She fell and dropped a book she was reading.

The book had a black cover and hands holding an apple.

“How did you not see me?” Silvia said to the girl.

“I’m sor…sorry.” The girl stuttered trying to apologise to Silvia.

She stood up and adjusted her glasses. Aiden picked up her book for her.

“Here you go Kayla.” Aiden said, handing her the book.

Kayla looked up at Aiden. “You… you know my name?” Kayla asked Aiden.

“He knows everyone’s name, don’t start thinking you are special.” Silvia said to Kayla.

Aiden and Silvia then continued their walk. Kayla watched as Aiden moved. To her Aiden moved gracefully and angelically from that moment on. She began to blush thinking about him.

In 4th Bell, Kayla was in Modern Literature with Miss Williamson.

Kayla was zoning off in class as she was writing her name and Angeal in a heart within her notebook. She let out a sigh of happiness each time she completed a heart.

“That was wonderful. It’s just like in ‘Parthenon’ when Helen drops her handkerchief on the floor and her soulmate picks it up for her, starting their passionate adventure into destiny.” Kayla thought to herself.

“Or in ‘The Revelation of Emily’ where the dark Prince Valentino reached up in the library shelves to hand the Duke’s daughter Emily the Book on Vampires.” Kayla became red again thinking about all the stories where the soulmate of the protagonist met each other through a single interaction of handing an item to her.

Lunch time came. Maria and Aiden were sitting at their usual table.

Kayla watched them both from the edge of the door. She held a napkin in her hand.

“Okay I am going to walk next to their table and drop my napkin next to Angeal. He will pick it up, and our eyes will meet.” Kayla thought to herself trying to prepare for the moment.

Other students were walking by her and they saw that her glasses were fogging up from her heavy breathing.

“You really have to give this a try, Aiden! It has a super creamy texture in the middle.” Maria said to Aiden trying to give him a spoonful of Shepard’s Pie.

“Please no, that looks revolting.” Aiden responded to Maria moving his face away from the spoon.

Maria continued to try and give it to him.

Kayla walked up to their table extremely nervously. “Okay, don’t fall. Just drop the napkin and turn towards him. It’s just that easy.” Kayla thought to herself.

Kayla dropped her napkin and it landed on the table.

Maria picked it up. “Hey you can’t just be dropping stuff on our table!” Maria said, turning around quickly to throw it at Kayla. But Kayla was turning around to make eye contact with who she figured was Aiden.

The spoon that Maria was holding went into the mouth of Kayla.

Maria and Kayla looked at one another. Maria is still holding the napkin in her hand in a throwing position.

They both stared at each other mortified about what happened.

Kayla experiences an indirect kiss with Maria.

Kayla pulled away quickly and ran off. Maria looked at her now empty spoon in disgust.

“Dang, if she wanted some she could have just asked.” Maria said, dropping both the spoon and the napkin on the table.

“I don’t think that was her goal. She likely just accidentally dropped her napkin. She dropped her book earlier today too.” Aiden told Maria.

“Clumsy people are the worst.” Maria responded. “Can you create a new spoon for me, this one has been… def.. Dah.”  Maria was trying to remember the vocabulary word for something that has been dirtied.

“Defiled?” Aiden said to Maria.

“Yeah, defiled.” Maria quickly agreed and Aiden created her a new spoon.

Kayla was in the girl’s bathroom washing her mouth out with water. 

“No, that never happened. Gross!” Kayla thought, trying to wash Maria’s saliva from her mouth.

Ashley, Vanessa and Sarah walked into the bathroom seeing Kayla talking to herself.

“Ah, are you good?” Sarah asked Kayla with a cautious tone. Kayla looked up. Her clothes were soaked with water and streams were still coming from her mouth. Her glasses had droplets all over them.

“Of course, heh.” Kayla said, trying to look put together in front of the glamour trio.

“Right…. Well we are going to go to the other bathroom, you take your time in here.” Ashley said, slowly closing the door.

Kayla was now embarrassed that they saw her like that.

“My life is ruined.” Kayla thought to herself.

Aiden and Maria at sixth bell Health class. Kayla was in that class with them.

Kayla looked over at Aiden who was sitting next to Maria and Ashley.

“My Prince is being held hostage by those two she devils. All they probably talk about is other boys and gross stuff. They obviously do not recognize the value of being able to sit next to Angeal.” Kayla thought to herself.

As Kayla continued to think about the things that Maria and Ashley do to Aiden she began to sweat with anger.

Soon it was becoming noticeable.

“Oh no, I can’t have him glance over and see me like this!” Kayla thought to herself as she stood up to grab a napkin to wipe her forehead.

“These here are my kidney stones that I kept to show the class, they come through the urinary tract-” Mr. Bowman was saying before Kayla accidentally hit her knee on the table causing the display skeleton to knock the kidney stones from his hand.

The stones flew and landed in Kayla’s hair.

She felt them land and went to reach up. She had one of the kidney stones in her hands and freaked out.

“Don’t move, let me get them out for you!” Mr. Bowman said, trying to calm Kayla down.

“Gross, gross!” Kayla called out shaking her head trying to get them out as quickly as possible. The other students were being hit by the stones they flew from her head.

“No, my stones!” Mr. Bowman said watching his kidney stones be scrambled around the room.

Kayla sat on the floor exasperated.

She then looked over at Aiden. He was staring directly at her as well as all the other students.

She became completely red and ran out of the class.

“Wow, she is not having a good day.” Maria said, watching the door close.

“I saw her in the bathroom earlier during lunch, she must have been taking a bath in the sink or something.” Ashley said to Maria.

“Probably after she ate my lunch. Hoping to clear all evidence of her crime by washing it away.” Maria responded.

Aiden returned his attention to Mr. Bowman who was trying to collect his stones from around the class. Aiden was pretty much unaffected.

Kayla sat in the bathroom with her feet up on the toilet seat.

“My life is beyond ruined. I’m going to have to change schools, I’m going to need to change my name, my personality, my parents…” Kayla thought frantically to herself.

Kayla then thought about Maria, Ashley and Silvia. She thought about how Aiden would be crying out for help from them and how she was the only one who could save him. Aiden remembering her name was proof that he wanted her to save him.

“I can’t leave. Not without my soulmate.” Kayla was emboldened.

A few girls walked into the bathroom and Kayla lifted her feet back onto the toilet seat.

The end of the day came. Maria and Aiden went out to the front where Aiden dropped Maria off so she could go back home with her mom.

Kayla watched Aiden as he returned back to the school.

Aiden made his way to the back of the school.

“That girl is still following me.” Aiden thought to himself.

Kayla was moving from bush to bush trying to look out for any other girls trying to meet up with Aiden.

Kayla then turned around.

“After what happened today I shouldn’t be trying to save him now. He will probably think I am disgusting.” Kayla thought to herself.

“But if I don’t save him now then he will be trapped between those witches for another day.” Kayla continued to try to prime herself to confront Aiden.

Aiden looked over at her.

“Okay, she turned around. It’s time to vanish.” Aiden thought to himself as he became invisible and flew off.

“That’s right Kayla, this isn’t about you, it’s about him!” She thought as she came out from behind the push.

She looked around but Aiden was gone.

“Ah… where’d he go.” Kayla looked around searching for Aiden.

In the end she did not find him and she went home.

Kayla got home, her clothes smelt like cut grass and sweat.

“Gross, why do you smell like that!” Kayla’s older brother said to her.

“Don’t talk to me, I had a terrible day.” Kayla responded.

“I’d imagine.” Kayla’s brother said while continuing to play computer games.

Kayla was in her bathroom. She looked in the mirror and lifted a part of her extremely long hair. “Maybe if I cut it then I will seem more attractive.” Kayla thought to herself imagining Aiden seeing her in the halls and leaving Silvia to walk with her.

“That would be amazing.” She continued to think.

She then found a bit of her mom’s makeup. She held it up to her skin. This might work too. “I will try and look like Christine from ‘Armour Farewell’.” Kayla thought to herself about a book she recently finished.

Kayla tried to cut her hair to style it. A large clump of it came down and landed in the sink. She looked up at the mirror and it was cut extremely poorly and much too short.

Kayla’s eyes widened.

She then freaked out. “No!” Kayla yelled at the mirror. “I need to fix this.” Kayla thought, cutting some from the other side of her head.

Another clump fell into the sink, and now both sides were still uneven.

After some time of trying to fix her hair she came to her brother.

He looked over at her and fell out of his chair like he saw a monster. “Jeez Louise, what on Earth happened to your hair!” He said to her,

“I can’t cut my own hair, can you fix this, big bro?” Kayla asked him.

He got up and stood over her. “It’s going to take a lot, but it’s not impossible.” He smiled at her.

He began cutting her hair.

Some time passed. “Okay, we are all set!” he said to Kayla.

He showed Kayla the mirror. She grabbed it and touched her hair. She had a large frown on her face.

“I look like a boy now…” She said looking at herself.

“Honestly I would say this is an improvement.” Kayla’s brother said, nodding his head.

“Why’d you cut it so short?!” She yelled at him.

“You already cut it that short, I was making it even. Now you have a pixie cut. Those are in now.” Kayla’s brother responded, trying to justify the style.

“Now Angeal will never love me.” Kayla thought to herself. She imagined herself confessing to Aiden. “Gross, I would never date a boy.” the imaginary Aiden said to Kayla.

“I have to put on mom’s makeup to look like a girl again.” Kayla said going back into the bathroom.

“Wow, not even a thank you?” Kayla’s brother was trying to say before she ran into the bathroom.

He continued playing his game. Kayla spent more time in the bathroom. She put on eyeliner, blush, foundation, lipstick and the works.

She came back out, and stood over her brother.

“Well?” She asked him.

He looked up at her. And fell out of his chair again.

“Why do you keep doing this to me!?” He said to her, Kayla stood over him with too much makeup on her face. It pretty much looked like she went to a carnival and got her face painted.

“What? Isn’t this what boys like?” Kayla asked him.

“Not that much, even if we did notice it. You look like a dang clown.” He said to Kayla.

“You are the worst.” Kayla said to him as he couldn’t stop laughing. Kayla went into her room and looked up how to get a guy’s attention.

“Step 1: Smile. Guys like girls who look open and friendly. A girl with a frown is a sign of her not wanting to conversate or engage with people.”

“Step 2: Don’t hide. You may think you are catching glances from around the corner or in bushes but the guy noticed you and probably thinks you are stalking him. A straightforward approach will always perform better than hiding.”

“Step 3: Ask for his help. Step 4: Talk about his hobbies. Step 5: Look him in the eyes. Step 6: Say thank you. Step 7: Laugh at his jokes. Step 8: Wear something to grab his attention. Step 9: Share your interest. And Step 10: Be genuine.” The articles which were the ‘10 simple steps to get any man to notice you’ read.

“No wonder I wasn’t winning.” Kayla thought to herself reading the article. She practiced her laugh for tomorrow.

The next day she saw Aiden and Silvia walking through the halls again.

She wore a hat to cover her short hair but had items all over it. “Okay, no hiding today! Wearing something to grab his attention. Say thank you. I got it.” Kayla said to herself before jumping out in front of Aiden and Silvia.

“G… Good… Morning…. Ang… Angeal.” She stuttered, feeling shy being in front of Aiden.

“Good morning.” Aiden responded.

“What do you want?” Silvia said to Kayla.

“Haha, yo… you are so… funny…” Kayla responded to Aiden nervously.

“I didn’t say anything funny.” Aiden said to Kayla.

Kayla gave Aiden a large smile.

“So… I like to… to… to… read. What….” Kayla was saying slowly.

“Okay, she is being weird. Let’s keep going to class or we will be late, Angeal.” Silvia said to Aiden.

“Sure.” Aiden said as the two continued.

Kayla watched the two leave. She took off her hat and threw it on the ground. “Darn that Silvia! I was doing so well then she had to come in and ruin it.” Kayla angrily thought to herself.

Alvin then came from around the corner.

“Ouch, thine performance truly gave mine eye’s difficulties to witness.” Alvin said to Kayla.

“You were watching me?” Kayla asked Alvin.

“Twas I who sought attention from thee. Yet thine gaze was grasped by a condor.” Alvin responded to Kayla.

“Oh, you are imitating the speaking style of Harold Wolfgang, the 15th Century Poet.” Kayla said to Alvin, picking back up her hat.

“Thou i seeketh thine attention, I offer thee assistance in thine predicament. Thus I shall teach thee the art of theatre. So that ye may speaketh with the confidence of royalty.” Alvin said to Kayla.

“So, if I let you teach me how to act, what is it that you want?” Kayla asked Alvin.

“None that which you do not already possess. I seek only an outing with thee tis weekend.” Alvin said to Kayla.

“Like a date?” Kayla asked.

“Precisely.” Alvin responded.

“I knew I was beautiful. So it is the influence of those witches that is stealing the attention of Angeal from me.” Kayla thought to herself.

“No, I am good. I can’t betray my soulmate by two timing him.” Kayla said to Alvin.

Kayla then went off to her class.

Alvin stood in the hall and recited a poem to himself. “The nicest guys will surely weep, for the price of love is truly steep. Once their hearts are broken and beat. To us their hearts we shall keep.” 

Lunch time had come and Kayla felt it was a good time to try and eat with Aiden.

She went into the cafeteria. Maria’s and Aiden’s seats were empty because they were out as usual grabbing something from outside to eat.

Kayla sat waiting.

“What is that girl doing?” Joshua asked, looking over at Maria’s table.

The rest of the prep students looked over.

“What is she doing? Is she new friends with Maria?” Rebecca asked.

“She seems rather possessed.” Issac added.

Silvia looked over. “Ugh, it’s that same girl from the morning. Kayla is her name. Angeal helped her pick up some books and now she is completely obsessed with him it seems.” Silvia responded.

“Maria is not going to be happy to see her sitting at their table, what do you think she’s going to do?” Rebecca asked Silvia.

“If I were to guess, she would probably just threaten her. Probably nothing violent though. Maria is a paper tiger.” Silvia said going back to eating her lunch.

“Well look who just now showed up.” Joshua said watching Aiden and Maria enter the room.

Maria looked at her table, then looked around the room, then looked at the time.

“Hmm, I could be wrong but it seems like someone is trying to claim our spot!” Maria said to Aiden.

“It does appear that way.” Aiden responded.

“Interesting. Someone has the nerve to actually come into the territory of the General. Aiden!” Maria said to him.

“Yes?” Aiden responded.

“I need a megaphone.” Maria said with one of her hands open to receive it and another holding onto a bag of chili dogs.

“What are you planning to do with it?” Aiden asked Maria.

“I’m going to declare war.” Maria responded.

Kayla caught sight of Maria and Aiden standing at the door. She then got up with a smile. “Okay, remember to smile, guys like a smile.” Kayla thought to herself.

Kayla imagined that she was walking confidently with a beautiful smile, but in reality she was stumbling and her smile twitched.

Maria held the megaphone in her hand as Kayla got closer. Maria then lifted it up.

“Hello… Ang… Angeal…” Kayla said as she got closer.

“What do you think you were doing sitting at our table!” Maria said into the Megaphone directly in Kayla’s face.

The entire cafeteria heard it and looked over.

Now Kayla had every eye in the cafeteria staring at her while she was trying to talk to Aiden.

She looked around at all the eyes on her. The room looked dark and everyone seemed to be laughing at her in her mind.

“She can’t do it, she’s not confident enough. Angeal won’t like a loser like her.” She thought they were saying while staring at her.

Kayla swallowed and tried to speak with Aiden. “So… so what… are your… your… hobbies?” Kayla said, struggling to get the words out.

Maria looked at Kayla confused, then she looked up at Aiden.

“You two are friends?” Maria asked.

The entire cafeteria looked up at Aiden.

The pressure of all the eyes on her, and the question that Maria asked Aiden began to make Kayla feel nauseous.

She then began to barf from the pressure and had to run out of the cafeteria to run to the bathroom.

Kayla stormed out before Aiden could give an answer.

Maria looked at Kayla running. “Well I guess it doesn’t matter anymore. Weird girl huh?” Maria said to Aiden.

Kayla was in the bathroom again. She was bent over the toilet breathing heavily into it. “Wow, that was intense. Never have I had that much confidence. I bet I looked amazing out there.” Kayla thought to herself.

A group of girls walked into the bathroom.

“I could have sworn that the girl who almost got destroyed by the tomboy ran into this bathroom.” One of them said, as they looked around.

Kayla lifted up her feet onto the stall.

The girls looked underneath all of the doors.

“Doesn’t seem like anyone is in here.” They said, ending the search.

“Dang it, we need to catch her to see what her reaction was.” Another said as they ran out of that bathroom.

Kayla stood on the stall.

“Looks like I already have fans and paparazzi.” Kayla thought to herself. “I’m going to have to keep me and Angeal’s relationship low key.”

Maria and Aiden sat at their table.

Leanne came to their table.

“Hey Maria, hey Angeal.” Leanne said to the two.

Maria turned around and smiled at Leanne. “Hey Leanne! Out of the theatre room today?” Maria asked Leanne.

“I heard your voice from all the way in the theatre rooms so I came in here to see how you did that.” Leanne said to Maria.

Maria handed Leanne the megaphone.

“I used this.” Maria responded.

“Oh wow, this is fancy.” Leanne said, observing the megaphone. 

“Yeah it is. Angeal made it for me.” Maria said to Leanne as she pointed at Aiden.

“You are so talented!” Leanne said to him.

“Thanks.” Aiden responded.

“So, can I use it?” Leanne asked Maria.

“Use it for what?” Maria responded. She was curious as to what Leanne wanted to announce.

“Well, I got the part of Juliet for this month’s theatre performance. And we are performing it tomorrow, so I would like to announce that to everyone in the cafeteria.” Leanne said to Maria.

“Check you out. You are doing this as your regular self and not as a character.” Maria complimented Leanne.

“Yeah, but can you and Aiden still help me out if no one seems interested.” Leanne asked Maria.

Maria gave Leanne a thumbs up. Leanne looked over at Aiden. He too gave Leanne a thumbs up.

Leanne then spoke into the Megaphone.

“Good day everyone, I have an announcement to make. Tomorrow we are performing Romeo and Juliet for our February Performance. You can pre order your tickets at the Theatre rooms for $10, or buy your tickets on the day of the performance for $12.” Leanne said into the Megaphone.

The students in the cafeteria then turned back around as if no announcement had been made.

Maria looked around. She then grabbed the megaphone from Leanne.

“It’s going to be amazing! Leanne is super talented and you don’t want to miss it!” Maria said into the megaphone and again no one looked.

“Well hopefully that will sell maybe 10 more tickets, so that’s good enough.” Leanne said to Maria.

“No it’s not, we aren’t going to stop until everyone rushes to get one.” Maria said to Leanne with determination.

“How?” Leanne asked.

Maria then looked around. Then she noticed that some of the students were showing images from their phones.

Maria then looked up at Aiden. She then handed him the megaphone.

“Say that you will give them your phone number if they go to the performance.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I don’t have a phone.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I know that, but they don’t. That will definitely drive up the sales.” Maria said to Aiden.

“You can’t just have him give away his phone number, that’s really personal. I don’t want you to have to do that.” Leanne said to Maria.

“How about just giving away Goodie bags.” Silvia said, walking up to the table.

“Oh wow, who asked you to come.” Maria said to Silvia.

“I was just seeing you struggle, and thought I could offer some assistance. Plus I was curious to see who this Leanne girl was.” Silvia said, turning to Leanne.

Silvia looked up and down at Leanne. 

“What about me?” Leanne said with a standoffish disposition.

“Cute, but that’s all you seem to have.” Silvia said to Leanne. She then turned to Aiden. “If they are promised something like chocolates they would definitely come, especially since it’s on lover’s day.” Silvia said.

Maria crossed her arms.

“That doesn’t sound like a bad idea. But I don’t want to admit it.” Maria responded.

Silvia gestured for the megaphone.

Aiden Handed it to her.

“If you come to the performance and show us that you bought a ticket today, Angeal and I will give you a goodie bag filled with chocolates to give to the one you love on Lover’s Day.” Silvia said in the Megaphone.

“Angeal and you? Who said you got to decide that?!” Maria said angrily to Silvia.

A lot of the students got up and began to head over to the theatre rooms.

“Wow, looks like everyone else better hurry up before the tickets sell out.” Silvia said to get the others to get up.

The cafeteria was now only 10% full.

Silvia then handed the megaphone over to Maria.

Leanne nodded her head. “Wow, that was impressive.” Leanne said to Silvia.

“”Your move.” Silvia said to Maria. Silvia walked away back to her table.

Maria clinched her fist. “You think you are so smart.” Maria mocked.

“Well thank you for both of your help, I will put on an extra special performance so as to not waste this chance. And soon I will have taken over the school.” Leanne said to Maria with excitement.

“No problem. We will be watching.” Maria said to Leanne.

Kayla finally got out of the bathroom and saw that a bunch of students walked past her.

She then went back into the wall where the door met the hall. She lowered her hat and covered her face.

“Wow, I have this many fans. I better be careful in public now. I could be swamped with requests from autographs and dates.” Kayla thought to herself. “My smile must have been too powerful, I have to check if Angeal is okay.” Kayla tried to make her way to the cafeteria but the amount of students slowed her down.

The bell then rang.

Later on in the day it was the 6th Bell Health Class with Mr. Bowman.

Kayla continued to cover her face with the hat. She peeked ever so often to look at Aiden. She tried to flash a smile at Aiden.

Maria caught sight of her doing it.

“Aiden, that weird girl keeps looking over at you. She has that look of a crazy person.” Maria whispered to him.

“I don’t know what she wants either.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Did you take something from her?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Quite the opposite, I actually returned something to her.” Aiden responded, trying to explain to Maria what happened.

“Super creepy. Just don’t look at her, maybe if we ignore her she will stop staring.” Maria said to Aiden.

Kayla noticed them both look straight forward.

“That witch, she cast a spell on him to prevent him from receiving my charm. My soulmate is still trapped. Don’t worry, I will save you my love.” Kayla thought to herself.

The end of the day came around and Kayla immediately left to try and catch Aiden before he disappeared from Maria.

Aiden dropped Maria off in her mother’s car and he went to the back of the school. Kayla followed him.

Aiden noticed her stalking him. “Hmm, she wasn’t in the cafeteria when we made that series of announcements. Maybe she is wondering what it was all about.” Aiden thought to himself. 

Aiden turned around and looked at Kayla. He then waved at her.

Kayla was stunned. She hid behind the bushes.

“He waved at me! Is this really happening!?” Kayla’s heart beat heavy. She then looked over the bush again and saw Aiden walking towards her.

Kayla looked up at Aiden.

“He… hello… Angeal….” Kayla stuttered.

“Excuse me Kayla, did you hear about the performance of Romeo and Juliet that’s happening tomorrow? If not, I think you should go. I will even give you a gift bag with chocolate.” Aiden said to Kayla.

“A… A… chocolate…. For me…. On lover’s day…?” Kayla’s brain nearly exploded from her imagination.

“Yes, chocolates, but only if you come to the performance.” Aiden said to Kayla.

“So… is… this… this… like a… date.” Kayla asked Aiden.

“Not really. I mean it is a date to go out somewhere, but it’s not like those restaurant dates.” Aiden responded.

“Oh… yea. Guess we… can go… to a restaurant on… or… our…. Second date.” Kayla stammered.

“So you will be there?” Aiden asked.

Kayla nodded her head quickly.

“See you there.” Aiden said walking off. Kayla’s legs buckled.

“I got asked out on a date! From Angeal! My heart! And it’s on lover’s day, with chocolate!” Kayla thought to herself.

Aiden went invisible and flew away. “Okay, that’s another person who will be going to see Leanne.” Aiden thought to himself.

Kayla got home and immediately went into her room. She squeezed her pillows between her legs and crushed one in her arms.

“It’s really happening! I knew it was true love! Just like those novels! A handsome guy picks up a book and hands it over to their soulmate. Then he invites her out on a date to get away from his captors.” Kayla squealed to herself.

Kayla’s brother knocked on her door. “Can you keep it down, in there, I am trying to focus.” He said to her from the other side of the door.

Kayla continued to squeal.

“Geez.” Kayla’s brother said walking away from the door.

“First we are going to hold hands, and then we will get close and then…” Kayla was imagining Aiden getting close to her. She fell back on her bed.

“Then we will kiss! Do I even know how to kiss someone!” Kayla thought to herself.

She ran to her mirror and brought it off the wall. She then looked at it and began to bring it close.

“Ew, it’s not the same.” Kayla thought to herself, looking at herself in the mirror.

Kayla drew a picture of Aiden, using a reference from her last year’s yearbook. Then stuck it on the mirror. 

Kayla then rubbed the image’s cheek.

“You are perfect, my love.” Kayla said as if she was Aiden.

“Oh you compliment me too much.” Kayla giggled to herself.

She then brought the mirror closer to her face. “Oh, not yet. I am not ready.” She said to the mirror with a drawing of Aiden on it.

She then brought the mirror to her lips and kissed it.

After spending a few moments making out with the image.

“Wow, you are truly the most amazing person to ever have lived ever Kayla.” Kayla said, pretending to be Aiden.

“You are too my dear.” Kayla responded to the mirror.

Kayla took the drawing of Aiden and placed it on her pillow.

“We shouldn’t be doing this Angeal, we haven’t spoken our vows.” Kayla said to the pillow with Aiden’s face on it.

“I can’t control myself with you!” Kayla pretended that Aiden said.

She then began to make out with the image.

The next day came and it was the time of the performance.

Kayla looked through her closet looking for her fanciest attire.

“I could wear what I wore to my cousin’s wedding, but then the paparazzi would notice me and try to take images of me non stop.” Kayla thought to herself.

She continued to try on outfits.

Aiden and Maria were in Maria’s room.

“Silvia is heading to the HQ.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Wow, she doesn’t waste any time.” Maria said to Aiden as she rushed out of the door.

Aiden then lifted her up and they both went to meet Silvia there.

Silvia rang the doorbell.

Maria then opened it. “Surprise!” Maria said to Silvia.

“Do you not live at your house?” Silvia asked Maria.

“You wish I did.” Maria jokingly said to Silvia. Silvia then entered the mansion.

“Anyway, which room is Angeal in?” Silvia asked Maria.

“In the big living room.” Maria responded.

“Pretty sure it’s actually called the ballroom.” Silvia corrected Maria. The golem took Silvia’s coat from her and put it away. “Okay, then I am heading there.” Silvia said, trying to ignore Maria.

“Seems like we got 4 hours before the performance, were you trying to spend 4 whole hours alone with Angeal. What were you planning?” Maria laughed.

“We have a lot of chocolates to pack, the tickets sold out, meaning 1000 students will be showing up.” Silvia explained.

“Sounds like you are going to need my help anyways.” Maria jested.

Silvia just continued to walk. She saw Aiden seated in front of piles of chocolate boxes.

“Wow, where’s you get all of these from?” Silvia asked Aiden.

“He knows people.” Maria responded.

“So we have 20 boxes, which each can fit 50 bags. Each bag will weigh about 100 grams. So that means we will be transporting a little over 100kg of chocolate to this performance.” Aiden said as he walked up to the two girls.

“Hmm, we may have underestimated how much work this would be.” Maria said, looking at all the treats.

“Let’s just get to it.” Silvia said as she began to place chocolate into the bags Aiden left out.

“So Maria, is honours getting the best of you?” Silvia asked Maria.

“As if, if anything, it is too easy.” Maria responded.

“Pretty soon Highschool placement exams are coming up. Thought about where you are trying to go?” Silvia asked the both of them.

“No idea.” Maria responded.

At the auditorium. Hundreds of students lined up outside.

Aiden and Silvia were handing out bags of chocolate to the students. Aiden smiled as he handed them out and Silvia thanked them for coming.

“The King and Queen of the school really gave us a gift! This is amazing!” Some students said after receiving their gift bag.

“You mean the King and the Court Jester, because I am obviously the Queen.” Maria said to them with her fist balled up.

“Of course.” They said lowering their heads.

“I’m going to find us a seat.” Silvia said, noticing that the line was beginning to thin out.

“You better find three of them. If you only find two I am taking it.” Maria said to Silvia.

“Whatever.” Silvia responded to Maria.

Maria then walked in to follow Silvia to make sure that she actually found 3 seats.

Kayla came in wearing her wedding attire. She was a bit late having spent too much time on her appearance.

Kayla saw Aiden sitting at the table alone. He had a few more bags of chocolate around him.

Kayla touched her heart. “My Prince waited on me. I am sorry my love.” Kayla thought to herself.

Aiden noticed Kayla coming in.

“Thank you for coming in.” Aiden said to Kayla.

“Of…. of course…” Kayla stuttered. “I… I… I am happy… to be…. On this… date.” Kayla said slowly.

Aiden handed Kayla the bag of chocolates.

“For me… oh, you shouldn’t have…” Kayla said, taking one of the chocolates out of the bag. She then ate it. “It’s so sweet… just like… you… “ She stuttered a little.

“Oh, sure. Well you had better hurry in there or else you will miss the beginning.” Aiden said to Kayla.

“Ladies first… you are such… a gentleman.” Kayla said, doing a creepy smile.

“We found a few seats Angeal, come on!” Maria came out calling for Aiden.

Kayla looked at Maria. Maria looked at Kayla.

“Whose wedding are you going to?” Maria asked Kayla.

Kayla then ducked her head and went into the theatre.

“Don’t worry my love, I will save you completely next time. I will face that witch.” Kayla thought to herself entering. “This chocolate is a sign of our love.” 

Maria dragged Aiden into the theatre and they all sat near the front to watch Leanne perform.

Kayla watched Aiden throughout the entire performance. She still believed that the chocolates were a sign of his love and not just something to bring in guests.

The play was a big success and Leanne was happy to see so many people watch her perform. Maria applauded loudly as all those in attendance chanted encore.

Angel Misery: Chapter Thirteen

“You actually Volunteer?”

Maria, Allison and Aiden who was behind Maria but invisible were watching Television. It was the holiday season and the typical seasonal shows were on rerun. Then it went to commercials.

“I am going to get some more hot chocolate.” Allison said as she got up and headed towards the kitchen.

On the screen were smiling faces and people behind giant pots of food.

“Support the local soup kitchen this holiday season. Because the best gift you can give is your time.” The commercial said as it continued to show people volunteering.

“This show better hurry up.” Maria said impatiently watching the commercial.

“Is what being shown on the screen unaffecting you?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria looked back at Aiden. “It’s not that I am unaffected, I mean, what could I really do right?” Maria responded to Aiden as she turned back around.

Allison then quickly rushed into the living room. She jumped back on the couch and under the covers.

“It is cold!” Allison said, covering her body.

“Is the Hot Chocolate done?” Maria asked Allison.

“It’s in the microwave, and I don’t know why you are asking, I didn’t make you one.” Allusion said to Maria.

“Wow, you were just in there, it would have taken less than a few seconds.” Maria said to Allison.

“Well if you think it’s so quick, you can go in there and make some now.” Allison said to Maria.

Maria got up and went into the kitchen.

“Could you bring mine out while you are in there?” Allison asked Maria.

“Whatever.” Maria responded.

Aiden and Maria were in the kitchen and Maria grabbed a scoop of Hot Chocolate Powder from the container.

“Actually, can you make something extra special, like some super double chocolate cocoa powder?” Maria asked Aiden.

“How special are you thinking?” Aiden asked.

“Like super pure cocoa, the best chocolate out there!” Maria responded with her hand raised high.

“I don’t think you are going to like pure cocoa.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I bet I would.” Maria responded.

“Actually, I can guarantee that you aren’t going to like it.” Aiden continued.

“Can you just make it?” Maria asked.

Aiden then created pure cocoa powder for Maria. He handed it to her.

Maria dipped a finger in the powder and licked it. Her face puckered from the bitterness of the confection. 

“Well?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria was trying to hide the expression on her face. “This is delicious. See… I told you I would like it.” Maria responded feeling more of the urge to spit it out.

“I’m literally not going to think any less of you if you spit it out.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria went over to the sink and washed it out of her mouth.

“What on Earth was that! That’s not chocolate!” Maria said to Aiden. “Are you trying to play tricks?” 

Maria continued to wash her mouth out.

“No, that was genuine cocoa. The chocolate that you both are drinking is practically sugar.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well, I prefer the sugar over that. That was horrible!” Maria responded.

Maria then went to make her own cup of Hot Chocolate with the prior Powder.

“I have to get you back for that, I can still taste it.” Maria said, pointing at Aiden.

“You asked me to do it.” Aiden responded.

Maria took Allison’s cup out of the microwave and put her own in. Maria took a small sip out of Allison’s cup to wash the taste out of her mouth.

Aiden and Maria eventually left the kitchen with two cups.

Maria handed Allison her cup.

“Oh you actually did it, thanks.” Allison said to Maria.

“Might as well, right?” Maria responded as she took her seat.

The show had begun and they continued to watch it.

After that ended Maria went upstairs to her room. Maria then layed on her bed.

“It gets dark so fast! The winter is always so boring!” Maria said to Aiden.

“The shows said it was the most wonderful time of year though.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That’s because they have snow. It doesn’t snow in Sequoia.” Maria responded.

“Snow makes all the difference?” Aiden asked.

“I would imagine, because all those kids laugh when they are playing in it. Building snowmen, and snow forts, snowball fights, igloos, and a whole bunch of other stuff.” Maria responded.

Maria then sat up from her bed.

“I just thought of something!” Maria exclaimed.

Aiden who was standing in front of Maria looked down at her.

“Aiden! Can you change the weather to make it snow here! That would be awesome!” Maria asked Aiden.

“For it to snow, I would have to bring the temperature down below 0 degrees celsius. Then create precipitation. The sudden change of weather could catch people unprepared and could cause widespread chaos.” Aiden said to Maria.

“So are you able to?” Maria asked again.

Aiden then looked down at Maria with a stunned look.

“Yes, I can do that.” Aiden said to Maria with hardly a surprise.

“Then let’s do it! I want to play in some snow!” Maria said to Aiden. “Do you see the smile that your best friend has on her face with all of the excitement!?” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then created the conditions needed for it to snow.

A chilled breeze went across the area bringing an immediate chill. The temperature went from being in the mid teens to being below 0.

The first bits of snow then began to fall from the sky and Maria looked at it.

“Look at that, it’s actually coming down.” Maria said. “So how long until I can build a snow fort?” Maria asked.

“It’ll probably take about 6 hours of snowfall at this rate for it to get to that point.” Aiden responded.

Maria then jumped out of bed and grabbed her sleeping clothes.

“Then I am going to wash up and go to sleep so that time passes faster!” Maria said to Aiden as she went into the bathroom.

“Mom! Look, it’s snowing!” Allison said downstairs.

Maria’s mom let out a frustrated grunt.

Some time passed and Maria looked out the window as she was in bed.

Aiden stood the entire night as he usually did.

The next morning, Maria got up and immediately went to head outside. The snow has gotten to 30 centimeters high.

Maria went out the door and saw that the road was completely covered in snow and that the entire area was white.

“This is awesome!” Maria said, looking out.

The cold then came and hit her.

Maria felt her bones chill and she stepped back inside.

She rubbed her arms. Aiden then came up next to her.

“Something wrong?” Aiden asked Maria.

“It’s freezing out there!” Maria said to Aiden.

“What did you expect? It’s snowing.” Aiden responded.

“I don’t know, the kids in the movies don’t look like they are freezing.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I’m guessing they are probably used to it, since it snows naturally there.” Aiden responded.

Maria then spread out her arms.

Aiden looked at Maria.

“You know what to do.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then pointed at Maria and created her thicker winter wear.

Maria then went back outside and into the snow.

“Now this is way better. Come on Aiden.” Maria said to Aiden as she ran through it.

Aiden walked outside to follow Maria into the deep snow.

Maria grabbed a bunch of snow and tried to form it into a ball, but it turned out to just look like a lump of ice.

“Aww, this doesn’t look like a snowball at all, what did I do?” Maria got rid of it and formed another ball, but it was lumpy.

“What are you trying to do?” Aiden asked Maria.

“You can’t tell, I’m trying to make snowballs so I can hit you with them.” Maria responded to Aiden.

“Then you should not squeeze it so tightly, it’s not like wet sand.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Then wouldn’t it just fall apart if I threw it?” Maria asked.

“No, it shouldn’t. Just give it a try.” Aiden said to Maria. Aiden grabbed a bit of snow and showed Maria how it was done.

Maria grabbed a bit more snow and patted it to make sure it had a good form.

“Like this?” Maria asked, showing Aiden her ball.

“It appears well formed to me.” Aiden responded.

Maria then threw the snowball at Aiden. Aiden moved out of the way and the snowball hit the ground behind him.

“Not fair! Why did you move!?” Maria said to Aiden. She grabbed another pile of snow.

Maria then looked up at Aiden as she was making another snowball. “Well? Why aren’t you making more, this is a snowball fight after all.” 

Aiden bent down and grabbed more snow and began to form them into snowballs.

Maria was trying to increase her ammunition numbers, but at each critical point Aiden hit her with a ball knocking her over.

“Just you wait Aiden, when I get done I am going to destroy you!” Maria said quickly getting back up.

“That’s if I give you any reprieve.” Aiden responded by throwing another snowball at Maria.

Maria was knocked over again. She then grabbed a bunch of snow and just threw the mass at Aiden. The pile of snow spread in the wind as a flurry.

“It won’t go anywhere if you don’t form it.” Aiden responded. He then threw another snowball at Maria.

Maria then quickly made badly formed snow balls and threw them at Aiden.

“Ha! Take these!” Maria yelled as she threw a dozen snowballs in rapid succession. Aiden dodged each as they were coming. Aiden then vanished.

“Hey! What are you doing outside!?” Allison said to Maria from the front door.

“I’m playing in the snow, what does it look like?” Maria responded.

“Isn’t it cold?” Allison asked.

“It is if you’re not moving around.” Maria said to Allison as she threw a snowball at the door.

Allison closed the door a little to keep it from hitting her.

“Don’t do that!” Allison said to Maria.

Maria was forming another snowball.

Allison then shut the door.

Aiden reappeared. 

“I look lonely playing out here by myself, turn into Angel so it doesn’t look weird.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Angel is out on a study abroad, did you forget about that?” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh yea. Well I’ll just say that you came back for the holiday season, that’s super believable.” Maria said to Aiden.

“If you say so.” Aiden responded. He then transformed into Angel, and made snowtracks that led up to Maria’s house.

“What’s all that for?” Maria asked.

“When you walk in snow it leaves tracks, it would be weird if ‘Angel’ was here but there were no tracks.” Aiden responded.

Maria then threw a snowball at Aiden. Aiden leaned forward to get out of the way of the snowball.

“Oh, give me a few minutes, I am going to build a snow fort, then we can have a real battle.” Maria said to Aiden as she was moving piles of snow together to make a way.

Aiden walked over to watch Maria work.

“What are you doing, you can’t be just watching me build my defenses. Go and make yours.” Maria said to Aiden as she tried to cover his eyes.

“I would already know, I’m just observing your process. Give you suggestions.” Aiden responded.

“I think I am the general here, I know how to build an effective base.” Maria responded with a devilish smile.

Aiden walked back to the other side of the yard and began construction on his base.

Maria was watching Aiden build every so often to take some ideas from him.

“Oh, a mout, that’s a great idea.” Maria thought to herself.

Aiden waited for Maria to finish her construction. He threw a few snowballs overhead to land on Maria.

“Doesn’t seem effective yet.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That’s because it’s not done!” Maria called out.

A short amount of time passed, and Maria was nearing the end of her construction. Allison opened the front door again to see what Maria was doing.

“You must be really bored to be playing in this cold snow all by yourself.” Allison remarked.

“Well for your information I am not playing by myself. Don’t you see that completely separate fort over there?” Maria said, pointing at Aiden’s fort.

Allison looked at it and back at Maria.

“That doesn’t convince me of anything.” Allison said.

“Angel, come on out of your fort, we can propose the snowball battle until after Allison realizes she is wrong.” Maria commanded Aiden.

Aiden lowered the ice bridge to his fort to reveal himself to Allison.

Allison gained a large smile on her face.

“What! You are back! Already!? What were your travels like!” Allison excitedly asked.

“Ahh…” Aiden began saying slowly.

“No time for explanations. Now you know that Angel is here and that I’m not playing alone so you can leave now.” Maria said to Allison.

“Wait a second, I’m going to get on my coat and stuff.” Allison said going back into the house.

“No!” Maria responded but Allison was already too far in the house to actually hear her. “Great, now she is going to ruin the fun.” Maria said.

“Snowball fights seem to be more fun when there are more people playing.” Aiden responded.

Maria thought to herself for a short instant.

“Oh! Actually, this will give me a chance to hit Alison without getting in trouble.” Maria said, rubbing her hands together alongside snickering.

“So are we going to wait or should we start now?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria grabbed a handful of snow and made a snowball out of it and threw it at Aiden trying to get a sneak attack. “We are starting now!” 

Aiden went behind the walls of his fort and dodged the snowball.

He threw snowballs from the small opening of his fort into the open space above Maria’s fort to get direct hits in her fort.

Maria pressed herself against the walls of her fort.

“Are you scared of a bit of snow!? Come on and show your face!” Maria called out trying to stay out of the impact zone of the snowballs.

“That’s your job to hit me, not my job to get in the position to be hit.” Aiden responded. He then released a giant rolling ball of snow to crush into Maria’s fort.

The snowball grew as it continued its motion and crashed into Maria’s fort opening a large hole. Aiden then started sending snowballs into the gap. Putting Maria into a corner.

Aiden launched snowballs at the corner where he figured Maria would be. She was now being rained down on my continuous snowballs.

“Okay, okay. You win that round.” Maria said aloud trying to stop the snow from smacking the top of her head.

The snowballs stopped and Aiden looked from atop his fort.

“Now we switch sides.” Maria smiled looking up at Aiden.

“How’s that fair?” Aiden asked Maria.

“War isn’t fair Corporal, I don’t make the rules, I just follow them.” Maria said walking to the otherside of the yard.

Allsion then came out in a coat.

“I’m ready to join you guys.” Allison said to the pair.

“You don’t have gloves on.” Aiden said to Allison.

“I couldn’t find any.” Allison responded.

Aiden then went into his pockets and pulled out another pair. He handed it to Allsion.

“There, the snow is cold. So you should wear these.” Aiden said.

“Wow, thanks.” Allison responded.

“Okay, now that that’s done. Allison, you are on Angel’s side.” Maria said to her.

“What are we doing?” Allison asked.

“We are hitting each other with snowballs.” Maria responded.

“How is that fun?” Allison responded.

“Don’t be such a party pooper. Are you going to play or not?” Maria asked Allsion.

Allison looked at Angel. “Of course I’m going to play.” Allison responded.

Maria then hit Allison in the chest with a snowball.

“Ha! That’s one hit for my team!” Maria proclaimed.

“We need to get behind cover of Maria’s going to keep hitting us.” Aiden said to Allison as they both went behind the snow fort walls.

Aiden showed Allison how to make snowballs as Maria was using Aiden’s snowball creator made out of ice in the fort.

Allison handed Aiden snowballs as he threw them directly into the gaps of the fort he built.

Both sides were gaining a large number of hits. Maria was able to hit Allison in the face a few times. And Allison did the same back to Maria.

In the end Maria did come out on top. Having hit Allison more times than Aiden hit Maria.

“Haha, looks like I am the winner!” Maria proclaimed.

“We are actually tied so far.” Aiden said to Maria.

“No, that counted as double because it was a 2v1.” Maria responded.

“But we didn’t even get to use Angel’s obviously superior fort, so that should even it out.” Allison added.

“Her fort is not obviously superior to mine!” Maria called out loudly to Allison.

Allison pointed at the large hole.

“Yours has a huge hole in it. It’s not even close.” Allison responded.

“Girls I made some hot chocolate in here, it’s really cold outside so make sure you are staying warm.” Maria’s mom called outside.

Maria’s mom then noticed Angel.

“Oh! Angel! I didn’t know you were here, let me make you a cup as well.” Maria’s mom said.

“Thankyou Miss Li.” Aiden responded.

“We will settle it by who can get to the house faster!” Maria said to Allison.

Maria then started running and Allison chased after her but fell in the slippery snow.

“Haha! I win! That means I won the entire thing losers!” Maria said as she went into the house.

Aiden walked past Allison as she got back up.

“Are you cold?” Aiden asked Allison.

“Nah, I am okay. Especially thanks to the gloves you gave me.” Allison responded.

“No problem.” Aiden responded as he entered the house followed by Allison.

When all of them were inside drinking a cup of hot chocolate they saw on the news the devastation that was caused by the freakish blizzard.

“People are unable to get to shelters, and we are lacking in volunteers today at the soup kitchen…” The people on the television were saying.

“Doesn’t look like everyone is enjoying the snow.” Allison said, sipping from her mug.

“They’d complain even if there wasn’t snow.” Maria responded.

“You don’t feel bad about it?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Why would I?” Maria responded.

Aiden raised one eyebrow.

“Oh yeah! Eh, I guess maybe a little.” Maria said, continuing to drink her hot chocolate.

“Guess that’s better than nothing.” Aiden said.

Some more time passed and Maria was ready to head back outside.

“This time I want to build a snowman!” Maria said, going out the door.

Allison stayed seated inside.

“What? You’re not coming?” Maria asked Allison.

“I think I had enough of the cold today. I’m going to keep watching TV.” Allison said.

“That’s your lost, it’s not like it snows here.” Maria said going outside.

Aiden followed behind Maria outside.

Maria then made a snowball and rolled it across the ground making it grow bigger.

“This is so cool how snow just does this.” Maria said to Aiden.

“After this I think we ought to go to the soup kitchen and just volunteer a little.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Aww, really. But the snow…” Maria responded.

“That’s exactly the reason.” Aiden said.

Maria then looked at Aiden with a sad face.

“We will get the full Holiday experience if we do go.” Aiden said to Maria.

Maria rolled her head on her shoulders.

“Ahh! I guess.” Maria said, moaning. “Let’s just head there now so we can come back quickly for more fun.” Allison said, pointing at Aiden.

“Any particular one in mind?” Aiden asked Maria.

“This is your idea, you decide.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Then the one from the commercial then.” Aiden said as Maria went into her clear ball.

Maria looked down at the snow covered city.

“Wow, this is amazing, it’s like a white ocean down there.” Maria exclaimed.

“I should clear it all by tomorrow so that it doesn’t do too much damage.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Damage? What damage? Snow is fun!” Maria said to Aiden.

“Snow is heavy, so it’s probably causing some roofs to collapse. It’s cold so that is a risk of hypothermia. It gets in the way so emergency services won’t operate optimally.” Aiden was listing the effects to Maria.

“That’s not really our problem though, that’s what adults are supposed to be figuring out. We are still just kids.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I suppose you are correct.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Of course I am. That’s why I am the General.” Maria responded.

Aiden and Maria landed in front of the soup kitchen. They both went to the volunteer sign-in station.

“Hello you two, are you here to volunteer?” The woman at the station asked.

“Yes we are! We are here to help everyone out the best way possible!” Maria responded.

“I love the excitement.” The woman said to Maria. “Now is this for school? Like a scholarship?” The woman asked.

“A scholarship?” Maria was curious.

“No, this isn’t for a scholarship, we are just doing it just to do it.” Aiden responded.

“No problem!” The woman said, handing Maria and Aiden the form. 

Maria and Aiden were signing their names in.

“Hey Angeal!” Kathrine said from near the back of the building.

“Whose that?” Maria asked.

“That’s Katherine, she is in the honours classes. She sits in the front row during my first bell.” Aiden responded. He then waved at Katherine.

Katherine then ran over to Aiden and Maria.

“I see Maria is here too. I didn’t take Maria for the volunteer type.” Katherine said.

“I guess you honour kids don’t know everything then, do you?” Maria responded.

“Maybe not me, but Angeal here definitely does. Isn’t that right Angeal?” Katherine asked Aiden.

“I know a lot of things but not everything.” Aiden responded.

“You don’t need to be humble.” Katherine said.

“Seems like you both already have a friend here. I will let Katherine show you around. She’s been volunteering for a while.” The woman said to Maria and Aiden.

“Follow me.” Katherine said as Aiden and Maria followed behind her.

“So what happens here?” Maria asked, looking around the building.

“Well some volunteers go out and pick up food from grocery stores, and they bring it here. Then from there some of us prepare the meals and give it to those who come for a meal.” Katherine said to Maria.

“She said you volunteer here all the time. Is it for that scholarship thing that the woman was talking about?” Maria asked Katherine.

“No, I just volunteer with my parents. Been doing it for as long as I can remember, especially during this time of year.” Katherine responded.

“Any cool stories?” Maria excitedly asked.

“Eh, a lot of sad stories. A bunch of these guys just had very bad luck. Like one guy here got kicked out of his parents place when he was our age, and has been living like that for the past 6 years. Didn’t even finish highschool because he didn’t have enough energy to walk most days.” Katherine responded.

“That’s terrible.” Aiden said to Katherine.

“Isn’t it. It’s like the government doesn’t even care. They rather these guys hide and die.” Katherine continued. “Good thing there are places that actually care about people.” Katherine remarked.

“So did you not get to play in the snow today?” Maria asked Katherine.

“No, we’ve been really busy here.” Katherine responded.

“That’s not cool. You are a kid, we should be outside playing, not dealing with this stuff.” Maria said to Katherine.

“So it is true, you are like a tomboy.” Katherine laughed.

“What? Are you going to make fun of me?” Maria said.

“No, I just hear a lot about you because you hang out with Angeal all the time. And I couldn’t imagine that he would have a friend like you, but here you are. It’s an interesting pairing.” Katherine said.

Maria grabbed Aiden’s arm. “What are you saying about us?” Maria asked.

“Don’t worry, I’m not going to take Angeal from you. I have to focus on Government stuff.” Katherine said to Maria.

Katherine showed Maria and Aiden the bread room.

“Here we basically open up the bags of bread and separate them into pairs so that the people in the front can give each person two slices.” Katherine said to Maria and Aiden.

Maria looked at the room full of bags.

“Wait, we have to do all of these?” Maria asked.

“This isn’t even bad. The trucks weren’t able to make it here yet, so this is honestly about a quarter of what’s usually here.” Katherine responded.

“Do you do all of this on your own?” Aiden asked.

“No, but since you two are here, the others decided to help in the front.” Katherine said to Aiden.

They all then began to separate the slices into pairs.

“So Maria, what brings you in for volunteering today? I bet Angeal was the one that suggested it.” Katherine asked Maria.

“Exactly, we were having a great time playing with snowballs earlier today. But I guess all that fun needed to be evened out with duty or something.” Maria responded.

Aiden continued to separate the slices at record speed.

“I can see where he is coming from. That’ll keep the gross feeling of guilt from occurring in your stomach.” Katherine said to Maria.

“You mean like hunger?” Maria asked Katherine.

“No, like that feeling you get when you get something that someone else didn’t, even though you didn’t do anything different than they did.” Katherine responded.

Maria shook her head.

“You’ve never felt guilty?” Katherine asked Maria.

“I’m sure I have before, but I can’t think of an example from the top of my head.” Maria responded.

“That’s interesting. I literally always have this feeling. I even feel bad when I say something that is just slightly mean. I think about it all night.” Katherine said to Maria.

“It’s probably because you volunteer so much.” Maria responded.

“I don’t think so, volunteering is what helps it disappear.” Katherine said to Maria.

“I know what you mean, I feel guilty sometimes too.” Aiden said to Katherine. 

“The perfect Angeal feels guilty sometimes? What could possibly have caused that?” Katherine asked Aiden.

“I get the feeling when I am being a bad friend. And the best way for me to resolve it is to confront it head on.” Aiden responded.

“Were you ever a bad friend to Maria?” Katherine asked.

“In like the very very beginning, but since then Angeal has been the best friend anyone could ever wish for.” Maria said to Katherine.

“That’s neat. Maybe I need to make friends. Like one’s around my age. I know a few people out there that are older, but no one I can hang out with.” Katherine responded.

“After we do this, we can play in the snow with you for a bit.” Maria said to Katherine.

“That’s for the invite, but there is so much to be done here. I can’t possibly join you guys.” Katherine said.

Katherine’s dad was overhearing their conversation.

“Nonsense. You help out so much. We can survive a day without you.” Katherine’s dad said to her.

“Hey Papa!” Katherine responded. Katherine then gestured at Maria and Aiden. “Papa, this is Maria and Angeal. They are both from my school.” 

“School friends eh. So Maria and Angeal, thank you for volunteering today… wait a second. Kat, is this the Angeal who placed top in your class?” Katherine’s dad asked her.

“Yes he is.” Katherine responded.

“Heard a lot about you kid. You have set quite the bar for my little genius.” Katherine’s dad said.

“Please don’t embarrass me.” Katherine said.

“I make no promises.” Katherine’s dad responded, with a jolly sounding laugh. “But anyway, there’s space in the back of the building. You all can take a good few hour break to play in the snow.” He said to the kids.

“But there’s so many people out there.” Katherine said to her dad.

“You all did a really superb job back here. Hardly could believe it’s just the 3 of you. So take a break. Everything isn’t going to collapse. Be a kid for a bit.” Katherine’s dad said.

Katherine, Aiden and Maria went outside.

Katherine stood still looking at the snow. “Well now what?” Katherine asked.

“Well you take a bit of snow like this and pack it like this and you make a ball.” Maria explained to Katherine.

Katherine then grabbed some snow and made a snowball.

“That’s good enough, now drop it one the ground.” Maria said to Katherine.

Katherine then let it go. “Is that supposed to be fun?” Katherine asked.

“Well not yet, I mean you could have thrown it. It doesn’t hurt. But right now we are making a snowman.” Maria said to Kathrine.

“Oh really? Like in the movies?” Katherine asked.

“Yes, like the ones with the 3 body parts.” Maria responded.

“But we don’t have rocks or a carrot, or any clothing.” Katherine said to Maria, following what Maria was doing.

“Angeal got that covered.” Maria said. Aiden then showed Katherine the scarf, hat, carrot, and rocks.

“Always prepared, I shouldn’t have expected less from Angeal.” Katherine said.

“So you are making the middle part, I am making the head and Angeal is making the base.” Maria said.

“I see.” Katherine said as she was rolling up her part.

Aiden was focusing on the base as Katherine and Maria took short breaks to throw snowballs at each other.

Once Aiden finished the base the two girls rolled their parts over to him.

He picked up Katherine’s part and placed it on his piece.

Maria and Katherine then worked together to lift the head of the snow man onto the body.

“Now we can decorate it.” Maria said with a smile.

Aiden was designing the smile, Maria wrapped the scarf around the neck and Katherine worked on the nose and eyes.

Once they finished putting it together they all looked at it.

“Wow, this looks exactly like those in the movies.” Katherine said looking at the well shaped snowman.

“Hmm, yeah, but it’s not quite perfect yet.” Maria said, looking closely at the snowman. Maria then ran off to a tree. She pulled down some sticks.

“Oh you’re right. Snowmen do have arms.” Katherine said watching Maria come back with the sticks.

“Ah, I was going to give it horns. But sure. We can use these as arms too.” Maria said, shoving the sticks into its body.

“There, now it’s perfect!” Maria exclaimed.

The snowman had two horns, a top hat, a scarf and a carrot nose. It was about 1.5 meters tall, and had a devilish look on its face with a smile.

Katherine’s dad came out to look at their creation.

“Now this is a work of art, come together so I can take a picture.” Katherine’s dad asked them.

Maria, Katherine and Aiden got close to the snowman. Katherine’s dad took a few pictures as the group did funny photos, serious photos and normal photos. Aiden in all of them had the same expression.

Some time passed and after spending the rest of the time making snow angels and igloos Aiden and Maria felt it was time to go.

“Okay, Katherine, we need to go back in time for our meal at home. It was fun hanging out.” Maria said to Katherine.

“I had fun too. You both should visit here more so we could do more fun stuff together.” Katherine said to Maria and Aiden.

“Or we could just do fun stuff without volunteering first.” Maria responded.

“Well, I’m still going to volunteer. So afterwards I guess I will do fun stuff.” Katherine said.

“That’s all up to you. We will see you at school then.” Maria said as they both walked away.

Katherine waved as the pair went around the corner.

“That wasn’t as bad as it could have been.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Seems like your ‘luck’ is truly unparalleled.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Jealous?” Maria said with a smile.

Maria and Aiden left the area and returned home. That night Aiden melted the snow and returned the temperature of the area to its typical seasonal temperatures.

The Great Snowfall of 2008 seems like it was only just a dream.

Angel Misery: Chapter Twelve

“Beauty and the Aiden?!”

Maria and Aiden walked the halls during the lunch period looking at events that have been posted on the school bulletin.

“Bleh, most of these are about sports, and not even the fun kind.” Maria said, reading the notes.

Aiden stood behind her as she read them.

“What is it you are looking for?” Aiden asked Maria.

“I’m looking for something I can compete in, Generals need to win battles after all.” Maria said to Aiden.

“The art club is hosting a rising star competition, you can join that.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Nope, not interested. I like to draw to distract myself, not for a competition.” Maria responded.

Maria continued to look through the pages.

“Alas, what beautiful maiden has claimed the glances of mine eyes.” A theatre kid came from behind Maria.

Maria looked at him.

“Ah, who are you?” Maria asked him.

“It’s a pity. My charm and elegance causes the goddess to suffer from a short respite of amnesia. No worries my fair maiden, I shall reintroduce myself. I am Marquis Alvinarado Di Cornao the Third.” He responded to Maria.

Maria just looked at him unamused.

“His real name is Alvin Cornao, he’s in our 7th Bell with Miss Richards.” Aiden told Maria.

“Oh, you’re like a side character huh?” Maria said to him.

“A side character, no, my dear. I am the main event, the lead actor. The star of the show!” Alvin responded to Maria.

“Why’d you come to bother me?” Maria asked him.

“I have seen thine gaze cycle across the board of wisdom and wanted to guide thine attention to the performance of Beauty and the Beast.” Alvin pointed out to Maria.

Maria looked at the board.

“Okay, and why should I care about that?” Maria asked him.

“Because there is no beauty in this school more beautiful than thee.” Alvin said to Maria.

“Beauty and the Beast has a Princess in it, and a Beast man who turns into a Prince right?” Maria asked Alvin.

“That is correct, you will be my Princess.” Alvin said.

“Gross, I don’t want you as my Prince. I chose Angeal to be the Prince.” Maria said to Alvin with a smirk.

Alvin then looked up at Aiden.

“This brute is not qualified to be the Prince of the story. He lacks finesse and spazazz. You might as well leave him for the dogs. Since you know they eat poop.” Alvin said to the two.

Maria then looked up at Aiden. “Aiden! You can’t let him insult you like that. Make him suffer!” Maria said to Aiden.

“I don’t really care. He is inconsequential to me.” Aiden responded.

“See, plebs know their place when around mua.” Alvin said in response.

Maria then started laughing.

“Oh, this is going to be good.” Maria then gained a menacing smile. “Looks like I am going to be in your stupid play.” Maria said to Alvin.

“Wonderful news my-” Alvin started saying but was interrupted.

“But Angeal will be my Prince!” Maria taunted Alvin.

“So it’s a duel you want!?” Alvin said, looking up at Aiden.

“Not really.” Aiden responded.

“Then we shall duel. See you at try-outs.” Alvin said blowing a kiss at Maria then left.

Aiden had his same bored expression.

“Haha, now it’s your turn to humiliate someone. That is an order from the General!” Maria said to Aiden.

“Oh well, guess I’m in it then.” Aiden responded.

Maria and Aiden walked over to the theatre rooms and found the folders that held the try-out scripts for the play.

Maria dug her hand into the Prince’s Scripts and handed it to Aiden.

“I bet you already memorized it.” Maria said to Aiden after he looked at it.

“Yes I did, it’s only 3 lines.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Yes, but you have to read those lines perfectly!” Maria pointed at Aiden.

“I won’t make a mistake.” Aiden responded to Maria.

Maria grabbed the Princess role.

“Looks like try-outs are tomorrow. So we can practice at the Headquarters.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I was wondering what kind of bottom of the barrel wannabe actors were going to come and grab a script during lunch.” A girl who was sitting in the theatre room said as she came out.

“Are all of you theatre kids rude?” Maria asked.

“Only to those who do not know the pecking order of stardom.” She said to Maria.

“Aiden, do you know who she is?” Maria asked Aiden.

“She isn’t in any of our classes. So I can presume she is in the 7th Grade.” Aiden told Maria.

“He is correct, I am Leanne Howard, a 7th Grader, but that doesn’t make me any less than you two amateurs.” Leanne said to Maria and Aiden.

“Oh, a 7th Grader. Then why are you being so aggressive. I’d think you would try to stay out of people’s way.” Maria responded.

“Because I am going to take over this school! And I want to make sure everyone knows.” Leanne said to Maria.

Maria then turned around and started leaving.

“Hey! Don’t ignore me!” Leanne called out.

“I mean, sure. I’m not going to get in your way.” Maria responded.

“But you are. See, you even have the script for Princess Beauty.” Leanne pointed out.

Maria then covered her laughter. “Oh! You are aggressive because you wanted this part.” Maria said laughing.

“Of course, I’ve been in theatre my entire life. Taking that script will mark you as my enemy! Especially since you are an inexperienced plebeian.” Leanne said.

“What is with you theatre kids using that word.” Maria asked. “I’m not even that devoted to this part. I’m just here to make sure my Best Friend secures the role.” Maria continued.

“Probably for the best. Since you were just going to waste your time.” Leanne responded.

“Whatever.” Maria and Aiden then left the Theatre rooms.

Lunch time was about to end and students began to make their way to the classes.

Ashley spotted Maria and Aiden leaving the Theatre area.

“Never expected to see you coming from there.” Ashley said to Maria.

“Some guy, I forgot his name, was being aggressive towards Angeal, so now we are going to take his prized lead role from him.” Maria responded.

“You mean Alvin? Yeah, that guy’s weird. So you aren’t just trying to find an excuse to kiss.” Ashley looked at Maria teasing her.

“Kiss? Why would I try to kiss?” Maria asked.

“You don’t know the story of Beauty and the Beast?” Ashley asked.

“I do, it’s about a girl who goes into a castle and becomes friends with an animal man.” Maria said.

“Then they kiss at the end.” Ashley said to Maria.

“They kiss? When did that happen?” Maria asked.

“You must have never seen the end of the story. Basically Beauty spent too much time away from the Beast. She imagines the beast was unconscious and felt bad. So she went back to the castle and saw the beast actually unconscious. Realizes she loves him and they kiss. Then the curse is broken and he becomes a normal man.” Ashley told Maria the story.

“What! That’s not a cool story at all. Why’d they have to ruin it.” Maria continued.

The bell for the next period rang.

“I have to get to class. But if Angeal is going to be the Prince then whoever is Beauty is going to get a kiss from him.” Ashley said, continuing to tease Maria.

Maria then grabbed Aiden’s arm and they went to Miss Wang’s class.

Maria was thinking to herself during the class.

Aiden looked down at Maria.

“Something wrong?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria was mumbling to herself. “I don’t want to kiss anyone, but I also don’t want anyone kissing Aiden…” She continued to try and think.

“How about we just disregard the play and do something else?” Aiden said to Maria.

“No, because if we withdraw then Albert, or whatever his name was, can say that you were scared to compete. I can’t allow him to have a victory over you.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I don’t really mind.” Aiden responded.

“I super duper mind, so I think I have a plan!” Maria thought of one at that moment. “Oh, so how about I secure the part as Beauty and you can become the Beast, and when the time to kiss happens we just change the script.” Maria told Aiden.

“I’m okay with that. I have zero qualms about the sanctity of the script.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“Ah, difficult words.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Those are words from the vocabulary list for this week.” Aiden said to Maria.

“I know. I’ve been studying. Just don’t want to think about it.” Maria said as she placed her head on the desk.

The school day ended. Maria went home with Allison. And Aiden went to the back of the school to meet her back in her room.

“It’s starting to get too dark too fast for me to be able to go out to your place before mom tells me to come back.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Then we are going to have to make use of the Angel Excuse more often if we want to use the Headquarters more.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“So I guess for now I am just going to have to practice in my room.” Maria said to Aiden as she pulled the script from her backpack.

Maria looked over it.

“This isn’t that hard.” Maria then tried to say some lines. “Father, please bring me back a Beautiful Red Rose.” Maria went back over her lines.

Aiden watched Maria move her hands around as she read.

“Are you supposed to move around that much?” Aiden asked Maria.

“I don’t know. I think that’s what actors do right?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Doesn’t seem like it, at least not from movies.” Aiden responded.

“I think acting in movies and acting in plays are supposed to be different.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Let’s just look up a performance of Beauty and the Beast then.” Aiden said bringing a laptop from the Headquarters back to Maria’s room.

They both watched a small part of the play.

Maria fell back onto her bed. “Ah! Why did I challenge him! This is so dumb!” Maria said to herself.

“I guess you were right, they do exaggerate their movements quite a lot.” Aiden said, continuing to watch the video.

Maria then laughed to herself.

“Aiden. Looks like you are going to have to be expressive. That is going to be funny to see.” Maria chuckled to herself.

“It seems so.” Aiden responded.

“Let me see you read your lines.” Maria commanded Aiden. 

Aiden grabbed the paper from his pocket.

“Don’t pity me. You are here to serve your father’s punishment.” Aiden read the lines with nearly zero expression.

“Ah, throw in some more passion.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Don’t pity me. You are here to serve your father’s punishment.” Aiden read it again with practically the exact same as he did the first time.

“You didn’t do anything different.” Maria noted to him.

“I did. I said ‘Don’t pity me’ with a little more force.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Couldn’t tell.” Maria said as she got up from her bed. “Let’s keep practicing!” Maria continued on.

The next school day flew by, and it was the time for the try-outs.

Maria and Aiden stood in line. There about a dozen or so students also lined up.

Alvin came out of the try-outs room and noticed Aiden and Maria.

“Oh you actually showed up, Angeal. I figured someone as smart as you would have known when thine defeat was imminent.” Alvin said to Aiden.

 “You aren’t a competition to me.” Aiden responded.

Those words struck Alvin deeply within his heart. Even though Aiden just said them as a matter of fact. The Competition was really between Maria and Alvin’s Pride.

“You will regret those words!” Alvin said to Aiden.

“You already did your try-out, so there’s really nothing you can do now, Albert.” Maria said to Alvin.

“Ah, it’s Alvin.” Alvin tried to correct Maria.

“Okay Algore, that’s not the point. The point is that Angeal still has a chance to steal your role, and you don’t.” Maria said to Alvin.

Alvin then held his head high. “I am not even worried. I gave a perfect performance. Try as thine may. Yee shall not surpass perfection.” Alvin said leaving the area, giving Maria a wink.

Maria shivered. “Yuck.” Maria said to herself.

“Aiden! Are you ready?!” Maria asked Aiden.

“As ready as when I first picked up the script.” Aiden responded.

“That means you aren’t ready! What about all that practice?” Maria asked Aiden.

“Okay, I am beyond ready.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“That’s what I like to hear Corporal.” Maria said.

“Up next!” The student in charge of letting other students in for try-outs said.

“I’ll go in first.” Maria said to Aiden as she stepped into the room.

Aiden nodded his head.

Maria stood in front of the 7th Grade English teacher, Miss Ruth.

Miss Ruth was recording what she thought about the prior performance before looking up and noticing Maria.

“Hi, Miss Li!” Miss Ruth said with a surprise smile on her face. “I didn’t expect you to be trying out!” 

“You are not wrong Miss Ruth, I am trying out for the part of Beauty!” Maria said with confidence.

“How exciting. You may start when you are ready.” Miss Ruth said to Maria.

Maria cleared her throat and started reading. “Father, please bring me back a Beautiful Red Rose.” Maria said, gesturing her hands around like a performer.

The male stand-in then read the Father’s line.

“Of course my Dear. But is a rose all you want?” The stand in said.

“Yes Father, it will make me the happiest daughter.” Maria continued to read.

“Your smile will make me  the happiest father.” The stand in also continued.

“Be safe Father.” Maria said waving her hand goodbye.

Miss Ruth clapped her hands. “Very good Miss Li. Have you been studying other performances?” Miss Ruth asked.

“A little.” Maria responded.

Miss Ruth then looked at her scoring criteria. Maria wasn’t placed so high. “She may be better suited for the role of an Older Sister. After All, Leanne did give a better performance.” Miss Ruth was thinking to herself.

Maria continued to stand.

“Miss Li, are you and Mr. Heavens still friends?” Miss Ruth asked.

“Yes! We are still best friends. He’s actually standing outside right now for the role of the Beast.” Maria responded to Miss Ruth.

“Those two have amazing chemistry with each other. I’ll just have to see Mr. Heaven’s performance. Mr. Corneo and Miss Howard have horrible chemistry, so that would be a much better alternative. Though I could pair Miss Howard with Mr. Corneo…” Miss Ruth was thinking to herself.

 “Ah, am I done?” Maria asked.

“Oh yes, just exit from the door you came from.” Miss Ruth said to Maria.

Maria then left and she gave a thumbs up to Aiden.

“You got this!” Maria said to Aiden with her typical confident smile.

Aiden then walked in.

“Mr. Heavens! I am beyond ecstatic to see you again. It’s been far too long.” Miss Ruth said to Aiden.

“Greeting Miss Ruth. Good to see you are in good health.” Aiden responded.

“Yes! I feel like a brand new person. After spending the Summer Break in meditation focusing on the principles in that book you allowed me to read, I feel 10 Years younger.” Miss Ruth said to Aiden.

“Amazing to see that work for you.” Aiden responded.

“Okay Mr. Heavens. Miss Li said that you were trying out for the role of the Beast right?” Miss Ruth asked.

“Yes, that’s correct.” Aiden responded.

“Okay, whenever you are ready.” Miss Ruth said.

Aiden then began to read his lines. “Don’t pity me. You are here to serve your father’s punishment” Aiden said with little expression.

“Yes! Of course! I was the one who asked my Father for the rose. Please do to me as you wish.” The female stand-in read.

Aiden then turned from her uncaring. “Clean yourself up. You smell like filth.” Aiden said again with very little expression.

“You aren’t going to lock me up?” The stand-in read.

“I said, clean yourself up. I can not have such a filthy woman join me for dinner.” Aiden said finishing the section.

Miss Ruth clapped loudly. “Perfect! You captured the Beast’s serious, uncaring nature. The tough guy personality that you can tell beneath lies someone with genuine love! You have once again blessed me with this!” Miss Ruth said to Aiden. She was thrilled.

Aiden continued to stand as if nothing was happening.

Miss Ruth filled out her sheet to note down Aiden’s performance. “I look forward to seeing you perform in the auditorium.” Miss Ruth said to Aiden as he then went to the door.

Maria watched Aiden as he left.

“So how’d it go? Did you read your lines any differently?” Maria asked Aiden.

“No, I read them like I always do.” Aiden responded.

“Come on Aiden! It’s like you wanted to lose.” Maria complained.

“It seemed Miss Ruth was happy with my performance.” Aiden responded.

“Really? So we still have a chance.” Maria said to Aiden.

“I can just about guarantee that I got the role of the Prince. But it seems that Miss Ruth may be leaning on giving the role of the Beauty to Leanne.” Aiden told Maria.

“What! But my performance was incredible too!” Maria said to Aiden.

“I was just looking at the piles of papers on her desk. Leanne scored higher than you in 4 of the 5 tables.” Aiden said to Maria.

“You think you can change them?” Maria asked Aiden.

“I don’t think those notes will be used to determine the roles, I think they are just being used to jog her memory. So changing the scores won’t change her thoughts.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Oh well, guess we will see the results tomorrow during lunch.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then looked at Maria confused.

“Is that it? You’re going to leave it at that?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Well I can’t do anything else, unless you can change Miss Ruth’s brain.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Technically I could, but that may be taking it a step too far for a part you have no interest in.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Yeah, that’s why I am leaving it at that. We already secured you victory, so we can just head home.” Maria said as they both went to the front of the school where Maria’s mom was waiting for her. Allison was sitting in the car reading for her English Assignment.

Back in Maria’s room Aiden and Maria did their homework and she went downstairs afterwards to play on her gaming console.

Aiden looked at Maria who seemed to have something on her mind, but was hiding it.

The next day the cast list was presented.

Maria and Aiden looked at it. Maria started from the bottom looking up.

“So the Butler is played by Paul Lewis, the Store owner is played by Tyler Williams, ah these are all useless. Where am I?” Maria said as she read the list. She then went to the top.

“Hey Aiden look! You got the Beast’s role. We won!” Maria said to Aiden. She then continued. “The role of Beauty is Leanne Howard!” Maria was shocked. “Then who am I playing?!”

Maria looked through the sheet. She wasn’t seeing her name.

Aiden then went over and pointed at where Maria’s name was.

“It says you’re playing as one of the Sisters.” Aiden said to Maria.

“One of the older step sisters! That’s not what I even performed for.” Maria said aloud. “Wait, if you got the Beast, that means.” Maria said, looking for Alvin’s name.

“Ha, he is playing the father!” Maria laughed.

“Well now since we already claimed victory we don’t have to continue with the play.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That’s going to stain our good name. Now we have to give the best performance this school has ever seen.” Maria said to Aiden.

“But why?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Because that Leanne girl beat me for the role, I can’t let that stand, I have to make up for that by being the favourite performance of the entire show.” Maria responded.

“Then we will focus on making that happen.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Exactly!” Maria said to Aiden as they both went into the lunch room.

Maria finally was eating the lunch her mom prepared for her rather than the outside food she typically ate.

“So the performance is in 2 weeks. I think during that time I can get the role of Beauty.” Maria said to herself.

“You really want that role?” Aiden asked Maria.

“It’s not that I want it, I just don’t want anyone else to have it. Completely different.” Maria said to Aiden. “Let’s come up with a plan Corporal!” Maria said to Aiden.

“About you getting the role of Beauty. I suppose during rehearsal you could memorize the lines of Beauty and make sure that Miss Ruth sees you performing them while Leanne performs during practice.” Aiden suggested to Maria.

“Too much work, I need something simpler. I could just break her leg.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Isn’t that a bit cruel just for a role. If you want to do that you could just go up to her and threaten to break her legs.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Well then she could tell on me, and then I’d just get kicked out of being in the play all together and she would still be ‘Beauty’.” Maria said to Aiden demonstrating with her food items.

“Making her sick would be okay.” Aiden said to Maria.

“That is a good suggestion, but knowing her she would power through it. Though if she was sick she shouldn’t be allowed to kiss you.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Kissing me while sick isn’t going to do anything to me.” Aiden said to Maria.

“How do you know that? Have you kissed someone before?” Maria asked Aiden with genuine curiosity.

“No I haven’t.” Aiden said to Maria. “But sickness comes from germs, which are living entities, which means they would have no effect on me.” Aiden said to Maria.

“You really never kissed anyone? Not even in the heavenly realm?” Maria asked Aiden.

“No I haven’t. But I thought we were talking about the role. Not whether I kissed someone.” Aiden said to Maria.

“So your first kiss is going to be with Leanne? Oh no, I can’t let that happen!” Maria said to Aiden.

“Then I won’t let it happen.” Aiden responded to Maria.

“How are you going to do that?” Maria asked.

“I’ll just create a separated object over my lips and then she won’t be kissing me.” Aiden said to Maria.

“But it will still look like it, the entire school would think she kissed you and she would think that too. They wouldn’t believe you if you said you had on some sort of lip mask.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Then I guess making her so sick that she can’t perform on the day of the performance is the plan.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Like really sick, incapacitated levels of sickness.” Maria pointed to Aiden.

“So you learned the word incapacitated but not echalon?” Aiden smiled at Maria.

“I learn words that I want to use.” Maria smiled back.

Some time passed and it was the first day of rehearsal.

They all stood in the large auditorium stage. The stage workers had constructed the set and the stage hands were on the ropes.

“Greetings everyone on the first day of Rehearsal!” Miss Ruth said.

“Good Afternoon Miss Ruth.” The students responded.

“Today we will go over Act 1, a quick run through. This scene will have the Father who begins as a rich man who loses all of his wealth. The sisters and beauty will be in the house cleaning, and it will end with the father receiving news that his investments were successful. Then we will finish the day with the daughters requesting gifts.” Miss Ruth said to the students.

The stage hand hands Maria, Leanne, Heather and Alvin their act one script. The background characters also receive their scripts.

Alvin steps up in front of the stage. He seems to be upset initially then takes a deep breath in and out.

“You are on a ship and about to be ambushed by pirates.” Miss Ruth says to Alvin.

“Unhand me foul men! You may take my riches and cargo but leave us with our lives!” Alvin reads his script.

The background characters fight with one another to act as though pirates were fighting against the crewmates.

“There are too many of them, retreat!” Alvin says loudly pointing to the left of the stage.

The stage workers demonstrate most of the ships sinking and the narrow escape of the Father.

“Bravo Alvin, now we will transition to the cottage. Leanne, Maria, Heather, take your places.” Miss Ruth says.

Maria stands next to Leanne giving her a mean look.

The stage workers hand them brooms.

Aiden watched from the side.

“Sister, may you please help me with sweeping the floors.” Leanne says as her lines.

“You can do that yourself.” Maria says without reading the lines.

Miss Ruth was impressed with Maria’s genuine improv. 

Throughout the entire first scene Leanne was able to feel Maria’s character of the spiteful Sister. Miss Ruth was pleased with Maria’s performance.

“Look at her, I bet she’s looking forward to kissing Aiden.” Maria thought to herself as the scene continued.

The last part of act one began.

“I have been informed that one of my ships made it to port, having escaped the dire situation that has befallen my compatriots. I am heading into town to collect our wealth, is there anything you desire from the city.” Alvin says to the girls.

“Father, please give me the finest dress from town, I have missed it ever so much.” Heather reads her line.

“My weapons would be pretty nice.” Maria says, despite her lines being to ask for jewelry.

“Father, please bring me back a Beautiful Red Rose.” Leanne says to Alvin.

“Of course my Dear. But is a rose all you want?” Alvin responds.

“Yes Father, it will make me the happiest daughter.” Leanne said without even needing to read from the script anymore. She gave her most adorable look she could.

“Your smile will make me the happiest father.” Alvin responded, trying to look like the most caring Father.

Maria felt like she was going to gag watching the performance.

“Be safe Father.” Leanne called out as the Act ended.

“Very Strong performances!” Miss Ruth said, applauding the students.

Miss Ruth then went to the stage hands to try and give them pointers.

Leanne walked up to Maria.

“Wow, that was pretty impressive. It felt like you were really the character. Maybe I judged you wrongly.” Leanne complimented Maria.

“Sure, yours could be better in my opinion.” Maria said with a hint of spite.

“You are a method actor, never getting out of character. I understand that. I might have a bit to learn from watching you.” Leanne said as she went to talk to Heather.

Aiden then walked up to Maria.

“That seems to have gone well.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Do you see how committed to the role she is already, I bet even if we put her in a coma she would find a way to perform.” Maria said to Aiden.

“She seemed nice to you now. Are you sure you want to do something like that to her?” Aiden asked Maria.

“Of course! She’s just pretending afterall.” Maria responded quickly to Aiden.

“Okay, actors. Line back up. We are starting from the top.” Miss Ruth said to the characters of Act 1.

Maria walked back to the front of the stage.

The first day of rehearsal ended. The students all started leaving.

“Great performance Maria! I will see you tomorrow okay!” Leanne said leaving the stage.

“Did you two become friends?” Aiden asked Maria.

“No.” Maria responded quickly. Her and Aiden then went outside.

The next rehearsal was underway.

“Today we are going over Act 2. This is where the father gets swept up in a storm, lands at the beast’s castle. He picks a rose from the garden after enjoying a meal. The Beast comes out from the castle and threatens the Father. The Father pleads for his life saying the rose was for his youngest daughter. The Beast agrees to release him, in exchange for the Youngest to become his bride, or else the Beast would destroy the entire family.” Miss Ruth explains.

Aiden, Alvin, and the background characters step onto the stage.

They then begin to go over their line.

Leanne stands beside Maria.

“So how long have you both been such close friends?” Leanne asked Maria.

“If you must know, it’s been more than half a year.” Maria says to Maria with an upset look on her face.

“That’s pretty long, most friends that I make stop being my friends after the final performance.” Leanne says to Maria.

Maria was able to sympathize with this. But she did not want to show that.

“You’ll make a true friend one day. You aren’t that bad if you drop that arrogant attitude.” Maria says to Leanne.

“It’s not arrogant if I can back it up right?” Leanne asked Maria.

“It comes off that way. It’s not even that fun kind of arrogant, like what I have. Yours is mean.” Maria says to Leanne watching the background characters host Alvin.

“Wonder why no one told me that before.” Leanne says quietly.

“Probably because no one could stand talking to you when you aren’t acting as a different person.” Maria says harshly to Leanne.

“Then I will learn from your example! Especially if I want to take over the school!” Leanne said to Maria.

“You really don’t have to. Just do what makes you feel good, and if someone wants to try something new don’t tear them down.” Maria said to Leanne.

“What are you doing, thief! I shall swiftly deliver your punishment for the crime you have done against me!” Aiden said to Alvin.

“Please! I didn’t know this was your garden. I was admiring its beauty. This Beautiful Rose was for my Youngest Daughter. Please let me return home to give it to her. I won’t ever disturb you again.” Alvin said to Aiden.

Aiden stood tall over Alvin. The stage workers put a bear-like cloth on him to make him look like a beast.

“Then go and bring your youngest daughter back to me in exchange for your crime. She won’t be treated as my prisoner but as my potential bride. If you don’t return I will find you and your family and destroy you all.” Aiden says to Alvin with his uncaring emotion.

“Angeal is really good too. He is capturing the calmness and calculative nature of a prince, but also the intimidation and despair of being a beast.” Leanne says watching Aiden.

Maria nods. “Angeal is amazing at everything, that’s why he is the greatest best friend.” Maria responds.

“So lucky!” Leanne responds.

Alvin returns to the side of the stage. He is visibly upset.

“That was my role! Why’d she pick that brute over me!” Alvin complained to himself.

Alvin kicked a bucket and it went across the stage.

“Calm down man. It’s just a play dude.” A stage hand said to Alvin.

“This theater performance is not a mere play, this is the stage that shall showcase the brilliant splendor of mua. My Beauty stands over thine, yet I am forced to play the role of her father. Why shan’t I be upset!” Alvin responds.

“Because you could just talk to her during school?” The stage hand says.

“Performance art is the most genuine form of communication! But what would a simple stage hand like yourself understand about that?” Alvin responds.

“Bug off dude. I was just trying to help.” The stage hand says leaving Alvin alone.

Aiden walked up to Maria and Leanne.

“You did great Angeal!” Leanne said to Aiden.

“Thanks.” Aiden said to Leanne.

“Do you see how angry Alex is?” Maria said, pointing at Alvin.

“You mean Alvin?” Aiden responded.

“Yes, that’s what I said, Alijah.” Maria responds.

“You’re doing that on purpose.” Aiden says to Maria. They both then look at Alvin throwing a temper tantrum.

“I guess some people just don’t cut it.” Leanne said, looking at Alvin. “But you, you are the real deal.” Leanne says to Aiden. “Tomorrow we will be acting together.” 

“That is correct.” Aiden responds.

“Don’t get too excited. Angeal is just acting like your prince.” Maria says to Leanne.

“I know that.” Leanne responds.

“As long as you do.” Maria says.

“In your places, let’s go back over from the start of Act 2.” Miss Ruth said as Aiden went back out.

Alvin shook off his anger and fixed his face for the scene.

They then went over Act 2.

At the end of rehearsal Leanne waved bye to Maria. Maria gave a small wave in return.

“Warming up to her?” Aiden asked Maria.

“No, we are still going to go with the plan.” Maria said to Aiden.

They both then left.

The third day of rehearsal began.

“Today we will be going over act 3 of Beauty and the Beast. The Father returns home with wealth from the castle. Beauty discovers the agreement despite the Father trying to hide it. The Brothers want to go and slay the Beast, and the Daughters blame Beauty. Beauty agrees to go to the castle. Her time at the Castle the Beast tries to win over Beauty, but she only sees him as a Friend. She misses her family and the beast lets her go. She stays too long and the beast collapses from heartbreak. She returns to the castle after having a dream and cries over the beast’s dead body. Having realized her love, the beast awakens and becomes the Prince. They kiss and the curtains fall.” Miss Ruth says to the cast.

“That isn’t too hard.” Leanne says taking her place.

The cast run through their lines.

“Do you like this library?” Aiden says to Leanne.

“I love it!” Leanne says.

“Then it’s yours.” Aiden says to Leanne.

“Thank you! Thank you! I couldn’t ask for a more perfect gift!” Leanne says to Aiden. She then hugs Aiden, of course because that’s what she was supposed to do in her role. Leanne looks deep into Aiden’s eyes.

Maria feels a bit of jealousy seeing someone else hug Aiden.

She backs up too far and hits a board causing a cascading collapse of the wood panels.

Everyone in the auditorium watches the wood panels fall.

Leanne then let’s go of Aiden.

“Well that ruined the mood.” Leanne said.

“Okay, Stage Workers, clean that up. Let’s start from where we left off.” Miss Ruth said.

Maria apologizes feeling a bit of embarrassment.

The end of the rehearsal was coming and after Aiden transformed into a Prince Leanne is holding Aiden’s head in her lap.

“Thank you Beauty, my curse has been lifted. Does this mean you truly love me?” Aiden says in her lap.

“Yes, yes it does.” Leanne says looking down at Aiden.

“And now you kiss.” Miss Ruth said to Aiden and Leanne.

Leanne then lowers her head to kiss Aiden.

“Okay, that’s good. Let’s start from the beginning.” Maria interrupts the moment right before Leanne’s lips touch Aiden’s.

“Why’d you do that?” Leanne asked Maria.

“We already know you know how to kiss, I think we should focus on the earlier parts.” Maria said, laughing nervously.

“That’s the spirit, Miss Li.” Miss Ruth said. “Okay, everyone take your places, we are running through it again.”

The actors ran through rehearsal over and over. And Maria found an excuse to interrupt the kiss at the end.

“I understand why you two are such good friends. Angeal has something about him that is so mesmerizing.” Leanne says to Maria.

“If you say so.” Maria responds to Leanne.

“I wish I could be real friends with you two.” Leanne says to Maria.

Maria looks at her, finding it hard to keep being upset.

“It’s not hard.” Maria responded.

Rehearsal then ended.

“Okay, I will see you next time!” Leanne said as she went outside.

Aiden walked up to Maria. They both then left.

In Maria’s room she was working on her homework thinking about the earlier rehearsal.

She continued to imagine Aiden’s head on Leanne’s lap.

Maria got up from her seat and sat on her bed.

“What was that for?” Aiden said to Maria’s sudden movements.

“Aiden! Lay your head on my lap.” Maria said to Aiden.

“Why am I doing that?” Aiden asked Maria.

“I need to show you the proper way to do it, just come on!” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden then walked over to Maria then he laid his head on Maria’s lap.

“Is this what you want?” Aiden asked Maria.

Maria then became extremely red.

Aiden continued to have his head on her lap. Waiting for what she wanted him to do.

“Yes… this is correct.” Maria had a hard time saying. “Now close your eyes, like you’re dead.” Maria said to Aiden.

Aiden closed his eyes. Maria looked at his gentle face.

She started to benign her head down to his. 

Her lips were getting closer and closer to Aiden’s.

Their lips were nearly about to touch.

Maria then brought her head back up. “I can’t do it!” Maria exclaimed. Seeming like she just ran a marathon.

Aiden then looked up at Maria. “That was actually pretty good acting.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Okay, you can get up.” Maria said to Aiden as she then sat back in her seat.

The rehearsals continued and Maria managed to make sure that Aiden and Leanne never kissed.

But it was the time of the actual show. And if Maria ruined it she would make an embarrassment of the entire production.

Aiden and Maria went backstage.

“So are we going to make her sick now?” Aiden asked Maria.

“No, she’s not so bad of a person. I don’t want to do that to her.” Maria said to Aiden.

“So you two did become friends.” Aiden said to Maria with a smirk.

“It’s not like that.” Maria responded. Leanne then walked up to the two.

“Break a leg out there guys!” Leanne said.

Leanne had a genuine smile on her face. She felt like she made a real friendship connection with Maria and Aiden.

She then left to get on her costume.

“Break a leg, that’s what you wanted to do to her at first.” Aiden said to Maria.

“Ironic right?” Maria responded.

The play then began and Alvin was on stage riding in a large ship.

The audience were completely engulfed in the performance. 

The play continued and each of the actors were performing remarkably.

The performance was being recorded and sold in the back of the auditorium.

The audience were surprised to see Maria on stage.

“Does that mean Angeal is also performing?” some of those in the audience asked each other.

Leanne and Maria’s performance together was well done. They had a sibling rivalry with one another.

After their parts were done. Alvin walked through the castle gardens. And picked up the red rose. He tried to capture the audience’s heart with his performance.

Then Aiden walked out from the left side of the stage.

The audience gasped at Aiden’s showing. The attention was brought back. Alvin hated the command that Aiden had with his presence.

“You are a disgusting, immoral, foul, rechtred, no good, incompatent, evil beast!” Alvin called out.

Leanne and Maria looked at each other. “That’s not his line.” Leanne said to Maria.

Alvin continued to hurl insults at Aiden each chance he had. And Aiden stood uncaring.

“I guess a Prince doesn’t care about the words of someone lower than him.” An Audience member said.

The performance continued and it was near the part of the kiss.

The audience were engaged. They watched the beast try to show how much he cared for beauty, then in the end collapsed from heart break.

Leanne came back on stage and grabbed Aiden’s body. She placed Aiden’s head on her lap and cried.

Maria watched them. Biting her lip with nervousness. “What do I do, what do I do?” Maria thought to herself trying to look around.

Leanne’s lips once again came down to Aiden’s.

The audience leaned towards the stage to see it happen.

Maria quickly looked around for a way to end it.

“This is the moment.” Leanne thought to herself exchanging air with Aiden.

Then the lights cut off. 

“Hahaha! You thought you were going to share a kiss with Beauty!” Alvin yelled out having pulled the switch on the electricity. “You will never beat me for the starring role, Angeal!” Alvin said as the stage hands grabbed him and turned back on the power.

Miss Ruth smacked her hand on her face.

Leanne and Aiden then looked at one another. “Moment’s ruined as usual I guess.” Leanne said to Aiden.

“Just continue with the end.” Aiden said, standing up and holding Leanne.

The stagehands changed their costumes to be wedding attire. Maria and the other actors, except for Alvin, came on stage in their wedding attire.

“And they lived happily ever after.” The narrator said as the curtain fell.

The curtains then lifted back up and they all bowed.

The audience gave an enormous applause that surrounded the entire room. Flowers were given to Leanne and Aiden.

They all bowed again.

“Somehow that happened.” Maria thought to herself looking at Aiden and Leanne.

Maria then smirked.

Alvin was being reprimanded by Miss Ruth.

After the performance, the actors all met up in the back.

“Sucks that you guys never got to kiss, that would have been the cherry on top. You two were amazing!” A stage hand said.

“Yeah, maybe next time.” Leanne responded.

“Probably not.” Maria laughed.

Leanne hugged Maria. “You were amazing out there! I hope we can hang out even after this.” Leanne said to Maria.

“Sure. As long as you remember that Angeal is no longer the Prince.” Maria said to Leanne.

“I am a professional actor, I don’t bring the characters’ relationship to real life.” Leanne laughed.

The actors of the play congratulated one another. And the performance of Beauty and the Beast came to an end.