By Patty H.
To understand what’s going on in the story, see the previous issue for Chapter 2. It’s highly recommended to do this first before reading Chapter 3, so you don’t feel disoriented. To avoid a long read, this chapter is split into two parts. Part Two will be in the next issue.
We returned back to Mark’s office at HQ, Well done girls, mission complete.
Thanks, Boss. But it was all Arina, Mel comforted me, giving me something to take my mind off of what happened. Those magical blasts could not have been real, could they? Mel wouldn’t have seen them if they weren’t. But it was not just about seeing it, we both manipulated it to take down the robbers. Of course, I did what I could, but I’d say she’s got the potential to rise the ranks here.
Indeed, Mark grudgingly replied. Mel was a good partner, but she was pushing it. That mission irritated her as much as it did me, and Mark could see that. However, he seemed to find something to help us. Maybe, but it was a lead.
Well, this’ll strike your fancy: the leader of the robbers wanted a meeting with you in our interrogation room. He was quite serious too, so don’t keep him waiting.
Oh, he can count on THAT, I uttered, and ran out of the room. The two of them jumped. He will get what’s coming to him, and I’ll make sure to give it to him steaming hot. Gesturing Mel to hurry up, I moved along. Little did I know that she actually stayed.
“Something’s wrong with Arina, Mark. Mel was concerned, ever since I first came to HQ. “I think the mission got to her, and this interrogation will make things worse. You see, some magic was involved and then-
“Say no more,” Mark interrupted, like he knew about the situation. What an idiot. “The powers are awakening, and if this keeps happening, they may be powerful enough to awaken. Come on, what are you hiding from me this time? Mel got impatient. You’ve never hid any secrets from me, I’m one of your best agents. Who are they and what does the “magic” have to do with this? He didn’t respond, instead placing a hand on her shoulder and said bluntly, We could be facing some big damage in the city. I suggest you follow Arina down to the interrogation. With a sigh, Mel obliged. And didn’t say a word to him as she left.
In the room, the grin on the man’s face was unnerving: a deceptive face of joy from ear to ear. A dastardly expression of happiness shining along his face. A glimmer shone in his eyes seeing us walk into the room. He was happy to see us, and I wished I could feel the same about him, but…I couldn’t.
“Finally, you arrived. Especially you, Ms. Ash, I’d though you would never arrive. Ms. Arina and I were waiting for you, he joyfully exclaimed as we weren’t going to tear into him for information. I don’t recall introducing myself to you, so shut up and speak when permitted to, scum. I almost threw up as his joy, but Mel comforted me, reassuring that things would go smooth sailing. We were here to get information about the robbery after all. I didn’t bother to listen.
My, my, just like I saw you earlier today. I’d never thought I see that fire, that spark of motivation! It is…Something I truly missed.
Well. To start things off, explain THAT. Mel had the first question.
You two are the only ones who will understand the story I am about to tell. The only ones that know the pain, the loss, the redemption, The man was clearly going out of sight. His eyes started to gaze into our own, and Mel soon started feeling faint. I brought her back to reality by slapping her, and she snapped out of it.
We don’t need your stories. The robbery. Explain it NOW, I decided to take things into my own hands. What did you want with the golden flowers, and what does it have to do with the ghost maids. Last time I checked, you were fuming mad when we took you in. No way you would have a change of heart that much. A sigh emanated from the man’s lips. So short-sighted… He soon went into his pocket and pulled out something that made my blood run cold. One of the golden flowers, in full bloom, looked completely unharmed. How did he get his hands on it? I asked him that, and this was my response, It all has to deal with the magic you see. Some people can see through it, others can use it. For every one that uses it, another one can see it. These flowers are the key to maintaining the source of it. These flowers are actually edible and can be fed to human, but once they consume one, prone to these powers they become, and soon enough they gain enough to awaken one of the most ancient warriors of old!”
Every word elated Mel’s face as she erratically wrote everything he said on her notepad. I had the opposite reaction: I hated the way he spoke, sounding like a spoiled child finally getting what he wanted. His eyes glowed with fantasy as he continued with his “story”, and it made an uncomfortable rage inside explode. Worse thing yet, he seemed to notice me getting uncomfortable.
My, a bit sensitive, are we? That’s alright, my words know when to push and when to fall back. All in the mind you see; it’s how I… how should I say this? Function, yes that’s the word. It’s more of a-
“Shut up. Continue. We’re fine. I’M fine.”
Four commands from me. The man jumped and started pouting, but Mel saw that I wanted to tear into this man for all he was worth. Harming poor people trying to make ends meet for some magic and flowers stuff? I’d die before I would believe such a thing. Oh wait, I was actually dead.
“Arina, relax. You’re getting WAY too worked up over this guy,” Mel took her chance. “We’re getting what we need from him. You sure you’re alright?”
“Yeah, I told you, didn’t I?” How many times did I have to assure that? But to tell the truth, I wasn’t. There was an unbridled anger, a rage that he was manipulating. I felt like I was going by HIS plan, not ours. Whenever I got mad, he was always smiling. Like I was getting mad for his amusement. Yet, I didn’t know how to escape. Never knew how to wake up and see that he’s deceiving me.
“Well then! No need to be hasty, I have my reasons for the robbery,” He continued on, the sleazebag. “I wanted to harness those powers for myself. Until…you two stole it from me.”
“Does what we did have to deal with anything else?” I continued the questioning.
“Indeed,” A serious tone seem to appear from him. He wasn’t jolly and happy anymore. If he was like this from the start, I would not have seen this as much as a surprise as I did as he continued. “It’s what they need to awaken. Every use of this magic gives them energy, and soon they’ll have enough power to dominate the world. Worse off, they’ll take out anyone that gives them the most, as a sort of ‘thank you, I don’t need you anymore’ gift.”
“Which’ll mean they will go after us?” I placed the question onto Mel. She didn’t answer, except for a whimper on a terror-stricken face. Suddenly, I had flashbacks to my death. Jude used the same pronouns: “they”. Yet, we were no closer to even obtaining a rumor, except for what this scum was telling us. He must’ve had a lead of some sort, but we couldn’t figure it out. But, Lady Luck shined upon us and commanded to give him the answered we were desperately looking for.
“Four powerful deities, too destructive to let live. They are identified by the color of energy they used during their lives. Disciples inherit these powers and when using them, bring them one step closer to revival. “This is a breakthrough!” Mel suddenly lightened up, wanting to hear more. “Where did you find this information, and how did you obtain it?”
“How do you know so much?” I followed. As Mel was hyper about this ‘breakthrough’, I was again bewildered. Him, a ringleader of a common robbery, knowing THIS type of stuff? It was too much to believe for a moment, but I brought myself back to reality from the tornado that was my thoughts.
“That, I am afraid you must find out alone. Not everything comes easy in this world.” “Give us a minute,” I ushered for a break and brought Mel and I out of the room for a minute.
To be Continued in Part Two.