Chapter 72: Behind That Innocent Smile Lies a Mischievous Devil
Hey, this is snoogen’s sister! She is very busy right now because she has to get ready for the MCAT and whatnot so I will be writing this chapter. Umm…yay? Anyway, this is my first time writing so please be nice. I will try my best to introduce the new character, but it is kind of hard to do so in this stage. Anyway, enjoy!
Somewhere on the coast of Brazil, three months ago
The bustling city of Rio de Janeiro were filled with the shouts of vendors shouting their wares to any passing costumers who would also argue back with said vendors to bargain and the happy screams of children as they ran down the streets. At the same time, the noise of the squawking chickens in their cages intermingled with the warning growls of dogs guarding their masters’ wares. At the ports, sailors were telling each other about their travels and bragging about their exploits as several screeching seagulls flew past by.
From the patio of a cafe, a young woman wearing a black breezy dress with silver linings and several colorful jewelries watched these scenes unfolded as she drank her cup of coffee while her companion, who wore a tan-color coat and a huge telephone on his back, looked around warily for any suspicious activities. ‘I don’t think this is a good idea,” he hissed at her as he tried to crouch behind a pillar and some plants. “We are in a crowded plaza and Akuma can easily pop out of nowhere and attack.”
Not even glancing up, she replied, ‘Relax, O Pessimistic One; nothing is going to happen. Besides, you are making all of the other costumers nervous because of your paranoia so just sit down and enjoy your goddamn coffee.” He started to protest but realizing that it was a lost cause, he just sat down and decided to glower at her instead. “If you insist, I will drink your coffee for you then,” she said as she shrugged her shoulders. She reached over the table in order to grab his coffee.
Suddenly, a gigantic bullet flew by where her head has been just moment before and hit the pillar where the Finder was hiding. Seeing this, the rest of the customers knocked over their chairs and fled with fright. She and her companion looked up to see four humans staring back at them. “Greetings, exorcist,” one of them said. “We finally found you.”
“Did you guys really look for me?” she asked incredulously. They nodded simultaneously as they transformed into Level 1 Akuma. “You guys are really sad; I have been here for three whole hours!”
The Akuma ignored her comment and prepared to charge their weapons. “Can’t it wait?” the exorcist asked politely. “I really want to finish this coffee because I spent a whole lot of money get this and goddamnit, I want to drink it while it is still hot. So can we hold this fight off until a little later? We can fight at the plaza over there since you already scared everyone away. Does that sound reasonable?”
Instead of accepting her offer, the Akuma launched their attacks at her as she immediately jumped onto several wooden tables and started running. “Now, now…you are too eager to fight; you guys really need to relax.”
Her Finder, who was also running away dodging bullets, became exasperated. “Are you trying to piss them off, Ms. Lyra!?” As he scrambled behind upturned tables and nearby pillars, the Finder yelled furiously at the exorcist, “I TOLD YOU THAT THIS WAS A BAD IDEA! DID YOU LISTEN? NOOOOOOOOO~! NOW WE ARE GOING TO DIE HERE!”
“Really,” muttered Lyra annoyingly as she put her left arm behind her back, “I wish you have a little more faith in me.” She pulled out an ivory bladed staff and aimed it at the Akuma. “Innocence, activate!”
Several energy shots came out of her staff and hit the Akuma, pushing them back. Not waiting for the smoke to dissipate, Lyra shouted, “Extend!” and her staff’s size increased. Using it as a pole vault, she launched herself toward the closest Akuma and landed on top of it. She immediately pierced the top of the Akuma. Before it could react, three large Innocence-fused energy bolts came out of its body, severely damaging it.
At the corner of her eyes, she noticed an Akuma about to fire its bullets at her. Lyra shifted her body and used the remnants of the defeated Akuma to shield herself. Then she proceeded to fire through the body toward her opponent. Hearing the second one exploded, she pulled out her staff from the first Akuma she injured before it detonated. The exorcist shrank her weapon back to its normal size and jumped onto a nearby building.
Landing on top of the café’s rooftop, Lyra did not have time to rest because two Akuma blasted at her but she luckily jumped out of the way. She grunted as some of the plaster debris hit her. This is bad, she thought as she shielded her eyes from the flying dust. I am in a bad situation right now.
“Ms. Lyra, they are right above you!” her comrade shouted. The exorcist quickly extended her weapon and propelled herself upward as bullets went flying past her. She saw herself between the remaining Akuma who were still aiming downward where she had been a few seconds ago. With a quick spin of her extended staff, she managed to hit both.
With the battle over, Lyra jumped down to where her Finder was hiding. “Thank goodness that you were not hurt!’ he said with great relief. He adjusted his glasses and looked disapprovingly at her. “Luckily, no civilians were in the crossfire. You should be more careful next time.”
Lyra just grinned at him and said, “See? I told you everything will turn out fine, O Ye of Little Faith.” The Finder just groaned. Does she ever listen to me? Suddenly, she grabbed him by the collar of his coat and pulled his closer. What is she doing? Why is she staring at me intensely? Is she thinking of doing something to me?
Instead, she tossed him behind her. Because of his surprise and the strength of the momentum, he tripped and fell into a nearby fountain. “What the hell-?” the Finder screamed in frustration but stopped until he heard the explosion and saw a crater where he had been standing.
“Another Level 1?” Lyra questioned as she studied her opponent. “Does the enemy think that I am THAT weak? Don’t know whether I should take that as a compliment or not.” The human Akuma with its transformed hand fled since the element of surprise was lost. “At least he was smart enough to try and run away.” She gave chase and followed him toward the café.
The Akuma abruptly spotted the café owner crouched behind the counter and grabbed him as a hostage. “Drop your weapon and surrender now, exorcist,” it demanded as it pointed its gun toward the terrified old man. She paused and stared at the Akuma. “My my,” she said softly. The Akuma pushed his gun against the hostage’s neck. “Do it now or else he’s dead!”
She shrugged and announced in an over-dramatized manner, “Oh dear! You got me! Whatever shall I do? I guess that I have no choice but to do as you demand.” She dropped her weapon at her feet and the Akuma laughed as it pointed its weapon at her. “Farewell, exorcist!”
However, the Akuma never fired. It stood frozen with shock as it looked down to see its chest was impaled. “How…?” it muttered in shock and followed the trail of the weapon from his chest down to….”Your foot?”
The exorcist grinned with pride as her right foot tapped her staff. “Didn’t you know? I guess I forgot to mention this, but as long as I have any contact with my Innocence, I can still control it.”
“You bitch!” the Akuma responded as it lost its grip from the hostage who stumbled toward his savior. Ignoring her enemy’s shouts, Lyra quickly extended her staff further away from the café owner and into the sky. The resulting explosion filled the sky.
The café owner grabbed her shoulders and started shaking her. “My café! My café!” he sobbed as he spoke in Portuguese. “My business is ruined!”
Not understanding a word of what he was saying, Lyra comforted him and smiled reassuringly. “There, there. Everything is okay now. I took care of all those horrible monsters for you. Everything will be a-okay, Mr. Hostage.”
This did not help the owner at all. He kept on ranting about how he was supposed to pay for all the damages, his reputation, etc. Luckily, the soaked Finder, who finally arrived at the scene, understood what he was saying so he calmly took him aside and explained how the Black Order will compensate him for everything.
After that was resolved, her companion sighed with exasperation as he watched Lyra continued to try to comfort the now-pleased owner and finally allowed himself to relax. Unfortunately, just as he sat down, he received a phone call. “Hello? Yes, this is he. A new mission? I see….Okay, I will tell her then. Good luck? Thanks, I’m going to need it.”
“Ms. Lyra?” he shouted at her. “We have a new mission!” She stopped chasing the owner and looked toward him. “Eh? What is it?”
He walked toward her and explained, “You are being transferred to another branch.”
She looked surprised. “What? I’ve been only here for only a month. They must really love me because they are sending me away.” She noticed the confused look of her partner. “You know, absence makes the heart grows fonder.”
Luckily, Lyra did not hear her Finder muttered underneath his breath, “I think it is more likely that they just wanted to get rid of you.”
“Did you just say something?” She gave him a smile that invoked death. He shuddered. “Um…nothing.“
“Anyway, whatever happens happens,” she concluded cheerfully. “So where are we going now, and what is the mission?” The Finder skimmed through his notes and read them aloud, “We are going to the North America branch to reinforce the Order there. You are to provide assistance and follow the direct orders of the Branch Leader, Lione Parcoeur. Oh, you know him!”
She looked at him quizzically, “Who?”
The Finder looked at her with resignation. “You know, ‘The One who Lacks Patience’? ‘Mr. I Am Too Practical to Do Anything Else that is Fun’?”
Recognition dawned on her face. “Oh…THAT guy. Why didn’t you say so in the first place?” The Finder started to say something to her but decided to whisper to himself, ‘But I already did.”
“Now is not the time to grumble, Grouchy One!” she scolded as she went to grab her small bag from the dirty floor and proceeded to dust it off. “We need to get ready to leave. Please get our belongings from the hotel and I will check to see if there is any ship that is planning to go to Boston.”
After she sent her Finder to gather their belongings, she looked around and was amazed to see her coffee was still there on the table. “At least my coffee is still intact,” she said with a relieved grin on her face. She began to sip her coffee but immediately frowned. “Damnit, it’s cold!”
Tabitha poked her head through the curtains that separated Lione’s bed from the other patients’. “May I come in?” she inquired. Her superior looked up from all of the paperwork that he was reading and nodded. “Anything news to report?” he asked as he placed the stack of papers on the bedside table next to him.
The exorcist began her report, “Eny said that your motorized wheelchair is 25% complete done. She estimates that it would take at most two weeks to finish it. While we are waiting for it to be done, Ying said that you can use this wheelchair to get around and that you should get some fresh air.” She pointed to a traditional wheelchair that was at the corner of the hospital room.
She then pulled out three pieces of paper from her clipboard and gave them to him. As he studied them, the young exorcist explained, “I found these hidden between two bookshelves while I was cleaning up the control center. They are communication logs from the Main Branch from a few months ago. Based on what I read, we are supposed to have a new exorcist coming here soon.” Why does she have a feeling that Amiti was the culprit behind this?
“A new exorcist, eh?” Lione muttered as he glanced at the file. “Let’s see…’We will be sending you reinforcements in order to help you in the war against the Millennium Earl’.” He grabbed the second page and continued reading, “’We will be sending you an exorcist from the South American Branch’…Apparently, she set sail from Brazil so I believe that she will be arriving soon. We should get ready then.” Tabitha nodded and wrote a quick note on her clipboard. “Here is the information about the new exorcist…’Lyra Winslet’. Oh, I know her!” he exclaimed as he read the last page.
“You do?” Tabitha became interested and sat down on the bed. She rarely heard much about Lione’s past beside the fact that he was an orphan before being discovered as to be an Accommodator. “How did you know her, what is her Innocence’s power, and what is she like?”
Lione smiled with great amusement. “Aren’t you little nosy?” Tabitha just stuck out her tongue for her response. “Well, I met her four years ago while I was going back from a mission. She was trying to hide from her parents and her fiancée so she begged me to help her, which I did. Because of that, she started to spend time with me and became friends. To keep it short, she found out that she was an Accommodator and decided to join the Black Order. I trained with her for a year or so, but I have not seen her after that.
“Her anti-Akuma weapon is a short bladed staff. There are three parts to her Innocence. Most of the time, she creates several energy bolts and fields to attack her opponents, but that is not her Innocence’s true powers.”
“Her true power?” Tabitha questioned. Lione nodded and clarified, “She can increase an exorcist’s synchro-rate with his Innocence. However, they need to be in her area in order for it to work and there is a time limit. She can also use her Innocence on herself to increase her agility, her strength, etc. However, she rarely uses both of those power because she becomes exhausted using this.
“When she first introduced this move, she was only able to increase the synchro-rate of any exorcist in a 1 meter radius by 0.01% for only 30 seconds. Based on this report now, she can now increase it at most by 3% for 5 minutes for the maximum range of 800 meters. Likewise her internal usage is similar but her power increased by 15%.”
“Only five minutes? That does not sound like a lot,” Tabitha said doubtfully. That might help in a battle against several Level 1 Akuma or maybe a Level 2 but against a Noah? It does not sound helpful at all.
Noticing her concern, Lione reassured her, “Those five minutes can influence the outcome of a battle.”
“If you say so…” Tabitha was still doubtful but decided not to say anything more about it. “Now to answer the last question: What is she like?”
The Branch Leader gave a weak laugh. “What is she like?” he repeated to himself. “Let’s see….how to describe her? It’s so hard to explain her personality, but the only thing I have in my head is that she is very colorful.”
Giving him a weird look, Tabitha mentioned, “What’s that supposed to mean?” Before he could respond, Eny began yelling for Tabitha to help her give new bandages to the other patients. The annoyed exorcist got up and gathered up her belongings. “Sorry about that,” she apologized, “You should be resting not talking to me.”
Lione shook his head. “I don’t mind. It was a nice needed break from doing the same routine. Whenever you have any free time, come and visit sometimes.” He gave a slight nod as she waved good-bye to him. It was hard to imagine that Tabitha used to be very spoiled and avoided responsibility whenever possible and now she has become a mature and selfless young woman. Looking outside the window, he wondered aloud, “I wonder if she has changed as well…”
A Couple Miles/Meters Off the Shore of Boston, a Few Days Later
The Finder woke up early and looked out the small circular window. It’s still foggy outside, he thought. He also figured that it was around six o’clock in the morning since there was a little light outside. As he got ready for the newly arrived day, he heard a knock on the door and answered it. “We will be arriving in Boston shortly,” a sailor reported to him. “Please get ready to get off the ship when we arrived at the port.” He thanked the young man and closed the door.
Well, I better get her up. He walked over in front of her bedroom door and hesitated. He much preferred her when she was asleep; at least it was peaceful and he did not have to be on the alert. After a minute or so, he took a deep breath and began knocking on the door. “Ms. Lyra?” he called out. “It’s me. Just wanted you to know that we are approaching Boston soon so we better get ready,”
He heard a groan coming from the room and her coming out of the bed. Based on the sound of water being poured out from the pitcher and into the basin, she was probably washing her face. Since he knew that she was getting ready, he shouted through the door, “While you are getting ready, I will inform the North America Branch of our arrival and will check if the ship is serving breakfast right now.”
Hearing her mumble that she understood, he proceed to walk to the common room (they were staying in first class) to make the call. “Alarm clock?” He heard her call out so he turned around. Her head with disheveled hair covering her face peeked out from the door and if he looked past the room, he could see her jewelry scattered all over the dresser and her exorcist uniform tossed onto a chair. “What is it?” he politely asked.
Lyra gave him a small smile. “Thanks for waking me up.”
“That was a great meal!” Lyra stretched her arms and placed them on the railing. She was now outside and was planning to enjoy the view except that it was still a little bit foggy. Somewhat disappointed, she rested her head on her arms. At least I could hear the ocean and the seagulls flying past by.
“Thank God that we arrived during the summer. I don’t know if I could handle the cold…” she muttered to no one in particular. Now that she thought about it, she was usually placed in areas with warm climates. This would be the first time she would be placed in a region with a cold season. ‘Well, at least I can finally see snow; maybe this is an early Christmas gift.”
After a few minutes of contemplating, Lyra decided to head back to the room and reread her report. I might as well get to know who I am working with…I wonder if Mr. Stiff-Lips learns to have some fun once in a while. As she turned to go, something caught her eyes. She immediately stood up and squint her eyes toward a far-off distance.
It was hard to see, but she could barely pick up a shape. It looks like another ship with three masts sailing away to someplace unknown. It appears that it was made out of woods, which was painted black and some type of figurehead decorated the front of the ship. However, the thing that interested her was the flag that was flapping in the wind. Could it be? “A pirate ship?” she whispered softly.
“Ms. Lyra! There you are!” her companion’s voice snapped her out of her thoughts and she turned around. She jumped a little and snapped, “Don’t scare me like that!”
“My apologies,” the Finder responded. She sighed irritably. My God, can he be a little less formal toward me? “I just come to inform you that they are expecting us and that they sent a Finder to show us the way to Headquarters. Also, we should grab our belongings right now since we are about to land soon.”
He realized that she was not paying any attention to him, but instead, she was leaning against the rail and staring out toward the sea. After watching her look around right and left and muttering, “Damn! I lost it!”, he finally asked with exasperation. “What on earth are you doing!?”
She stopped what she was doing and looked at him. She was upset that she lost sight of that ship, but she dared not tell him about it. If I tell him about the pirate ship, he would definitely flip out. I better keep this a secret. “Oh, it’s nothing,” she lied as she hopped down from the railing and walked past by him. “I just felt like doing that.”
The Finder just sighed as he followed her inside. I swear that I don’t understand that girl sometimes.
The port was filled with passengers as they bustled out of the ship. Walking through the crowd, Lyra and her Finder looked around for their guide. It was nearly impossible to find him through and they began to wonder if they would have to stay the night at a nearby hotel when they suddenly noticed a tan-coated man was waving at them.
As they walked toward him, her companion became worried and pulled her closer to him. “What is it?” she asked as she looked straight ahead. He cleared his throat and murmured in her ear. “I think it would be best if you should be in your best behavior. After all, people judge you based on their first impressions.”
Lyra started to protest but decided against it. “Fine,” she answered. “I will be on my best behavior.” He sighed with relief; maybe she finally learned something from him. However, his relief transferred into horror when he heard her greeted the other Finder.
“Good day, good sir!” she said with a singing voice. “Lovely weather that we are having here, isn’t it? I hope you did not have to wait that long for us.” The other Finder was speechless at first but finally spoke, “N-no, it’s fine; I just got here.”
“Really? That’s good to hear,” she beamed. The other Finder looked at her companion and gave a look that said, “Are you sure that she is really an exorcist?” He just shrugged and gave him a weak smile. Why is she mocking me?
The Finder just coughed and started walking. “Anyway, I better show you the way. By the way, my name is Wesley and I will be your guide. I know that you are Lyra Winslet, but you are?”
Before he could reply, Lyra interrupted, “Oh, my companion here is known as ‘Seasick Green’ because he turns green whenever he becomes seasick.” Ignoring Wesley’s chortling, the embarrassed Finder continued walking and wished that she would have used another nickname instead of that one.
“Lione, you better get ready to greet the newest member,” Ying said as she wheeled in a wheelchair toward his bed. Lione nodded and allowed her to help him into it. After checking to see if everything was fine, she released the brakes and wheeled him toward the grand entrance where Madeline and Rinvak were waiting for him. He had decided at the last minute to have them be in the welcoming committee since these are the two he trusted the most.
Ying set the wheelchair between the two women and after setting up the brake, stood right behind him silently. Madeline gave him a small smile while Rinvak squeezed his shoulder. He smiled back at her to assure her that he is okay. With that done, Lione turned his head straight ahead toward the elevator in order to ignore seeing the other remaining members tried to their best to pretend that they were working and not trying to see the new exorcist.
The sounds of the elevator alerted them that their company is arriving soon. “Remember what I told you: Expect the unexpected,” Lione warned the people next to him watching as the elevator doors opened. He recognized Wesley as the one who held the door for the two guests stepping out of the elevator shaft. Even though he has not seen Lyra for three years now, Lione knew it was her because of the colorful jewelry that jingled as she moved. Well, here goes… he thought as he took a deep breath.
Rinvak shifted her body a little bit as she studied her newest comrade who was looking around the place. For someone who supposed to be older than I am, she sure act like a child. Lyra (Was that her name?) would linger around at a spot for a few seconds to inspect every single detail of the place like she was a drill sergeant while her Finder tried to nudge her to move forward.
At the corner of her eyes, Rinvak was relieved to see that Madeline was tapping her foot with great irritation. At least I am not the only one who is annoyed…. She looked down at Lione and mouthed, “What is she doing?” He just gave her an apologetic look and mouthed back, “Just let her be. She will stop it eventually.”
After looking up at the high cathedral ceiling, she observed Lyra who stopped walking and looked at her Finder with a huge smile on her face. “Wow!” she beamed. “This is not THAT half as bad as I expected! I imagine this place to be more stuffy and cramp; it is actually quite airy!”
Lione winced when he heard her comment. I can’t believe she just said that. He turned to look at his companions and judged by their expression, they were horrified as well. Madeline was gasping while Rinvak was covering her gaping mouth. Not that I blamed them, he thought wryly as he glanced up the ceiling, which was filled with holes caused by the Akuma’s attacks. Noticing that Lyra was oblivious to what she had caused, he cleared his throat really hard to get her attention.
She turned around, smiled at him, and walked over toward him with her Finder in tow. Stopping a few steps in front of him, she held her hand out, and greeted, “It has been awhile, Impatient Taskmaster!” That, of course, caused more horrified reactions from everyone. In fact, her Finder was hissing an admonishment in her ear, but she just tuned him out.
I knew that I forgot to mention something… Lione sighed and gave her a desperate look. “You haven’t changed at all, Lyra.” She covered her face embarrassingly and laughed as she waved her hand as if she was shooing a fly. “Oh, stop it! You praise me too much.”
He said to her flatly, “That wasn’t a compliment.”
Deciding that he should get straight to business before anything else escalates, Lione became serious. “Lyra, as you probably heard from Wesley, we suffered a heavy loss when some members of the Noah family attacked this place. With only four exorcists left, we are in dire need-”
“Who is the other one,” Lyra interrupted, “besides you and those women next to you?” She nodded toward Madeline and Rinvak who just stood there stiffly and did not say anything. “Man, you guys are way too serious.”
Lione disregarded that comment and answered, “This is Rinvak and this is Sister Madeline.” He pointed to each of the women as he said that. “And the last one is named Tabitha.”
“So you are telling me that besides you, all of the exorcists here are women?” she asked questioningly. “Geez, Lione, I didn’t know that you are a pimp. That does not seem like you at all.”
Before he could reply, Madeline scolded, “Ms. Lyra, stop making those unnecessary comments! There are male exorcists here, but unfortunately, two of them including with a young woman are captured, one is in a coma, and another one is in a mission in Japan.”
Unfazed, Lyra whistled with surprise. “So you are saying that the boys here are weak? Wow, the rumors were right…this headquarter is really messed-up.”
Suddenly, someone blurted angrily, “How dare you insult this branch? You don’t know anything, you jerk!” Everyone looked up to see a furious Eny glaring at Lyra from the second floor balcony; Tabitha was trying her best to calm the young Bookwoman down. So that where they were hiding… the welcoming committee thought at the same time.
Lyra just shook her head as she covered her ears from Eny’s shouts. “You are such a noisy little munchkin…that’s it! You shall be known as ‘Noisy Munchkin’!”
While she looked pleased about it, Eny was not. Instead the Bookwoman looked like she wanted to lunge the exorcist and attack her. “Noisy Munchkin!? You take that back! My name is Eny Vachir the Bookwoman prodigy! I don’t care who you are; I am gonna let you have it!” she screamed while Tabitha and a group of Finders and medical staff held her down before she jumped off from the balcony.
“My, my,” Lyra mused, “children are so energetic these days. Now, now we can play a little bit later.” Hearing that, Eny started to shout obscenities at her. Lione covered his face with his hands. I am going to have a headache from this. He sighed. She is still manipulative as ever.
“You did that on purpose, didn’t you?” he said wearily. She just gave him a devilish smile and winked. “Of course.” Lione frowned. This is going to be a long day. How he desperately wish to drink a nice glass of ice cold rum right now.
After everyone – mostly Eny – settled down, they decided that Lyra and her companion needed to rest from the journey. Rinvak sighed as she watched Lyra lingered in the hallway. That was a weird experience. Remind me never to do that again no matter how much Lione asked.
“Ms. Lyra?” she looked to see Lyra’s Finder calling out to the tan-skinned exorcist. “I will be getting the luggage from upstairs. Please behave.” Lyra just gave him a blank look but answered, “Okay.”
Watching this interaction, Rinvak could not stop herself from wistfully wishing that the Finder was actually the exorcist and that Lyra was actually some random Finder who just wanted some attention. Maybe this was really a prank that someone was pulling.
“Eh? Is this the hospital room?” She turned to see Lyra was in the hospital and was asking that question to a medical staff. The staff member nodded and cautioned her to be quiet right now since the patients were resting. Having a bad feeling about it, Rinvak quietly crept over to the doorway and kept an eye on her.
Lyra was conversing with the staff member as they walked around the room. She suddenly stopped and pointed to one of the patients. “What’s wrong with sleepyhead over there?”
Rinvak’s eyes followed where Lyra was pointing and was stunned to see that she was pointing at Zeran through the small opening of the curtain. She also noticed without any surprise that Reina was still there and holding his hand. Luckily, she was too busy guarding over him to hear that comment.
“That is Zeran,” the medical staff member answered quietly. “Sister Madeline mentioned about him earlier; he is the exorcist who is in the coma.”
“I see…” she responded. “What’s about her?” She stared at Reina who tried her best not to yawn.
Her “appointed” guide hesitated but finally answered, “I believe she is Zeran’s friend named Reina. She has been taking care of him that in fact, she refused to have anyone else take care of him.”
“So you’re telling me that she has been in that room for the entire time without any rest?” Lyra raised her eyebrows in disbelief; he nodded. “Unbelievable…let me knock some sense into her.” Before he could say anything, she already marched over to Reina.
This I gotta see… Rinvak walked over to where Lyra was standing and watched the whole scenario.
Reina was staring at Zeran with great intensity that at first, she did not notice a presence was standing right next to her. “What do you want?” she snapped when she saw this weird stranger was looking at her curiously. Can’t she see I am busy?
“Oh nothing,” she replied in a perky voice. “I was just admiring the bags underneath your eyes. They are quite lovely!”
Annoyed, Reina gave her a death glare and ordered, “If you have nothing else to do, then get out.” However, the lady just stood there and refused to move. “Did you hear me? Get out!”
Instead she looked at Zeran and asked softly, “Is this your friend? How long has he been like this?” Reina lowered her face and muttered, “For a week now.” Tears began to roll down her cheeks but she wiped them away quickly. I don’t want this stranger to see me like this.
“It’s okay to cry, you know.” She looked up to see that the lady was looking at her. “And it is also nice that you really care for him, but pushing yourself to exhaustion is ridiculous especially when there are other people who are willing to help out.” She nudged her head toward the nurses and doctors outside of the room.
Reina looked at her defiantly. Who does she think she is? My mother? “I can’t!” The woman gave her a questioning look. “This spirit told me to keep an eye on him!”
“Honestly, this brat needs to grow some backbone,” she muttered aloud so that Reina could hear her and she felt her face flushed with anger. As she was about to say something, the woman looked at her straight in the eyes and challenged, “So if this ‘ghost’ tells you to jump off a bridge, would you do that?”
Reina became silent and decided to look at Zeran’s face to calm herself down. She was seething with anger but refused to lash out. She is probably just trying to provoke me. Well, I won’t let her! She felt the lady’s staring at her but ignored it. She will leave sooner or later.
Suddenly, she felt her wrists being grabbed and her body’s being dragged off the chair. “What are you doing!?” she demanded. The lady just smiled. “I think Narki over there needs some alone time so I thought it would be nice if you spend some time with me.”
She began to protest, but the stranger was too intent on her task to pay any attention to her. “Someone, please help me!” she screamed at the hospital staff who was staring at them. “This wacko is trying to kidnap me!”
Lyra bit her lips to prevent herself from yelling at the girl. Instead she forced the brat’s right arm behind her body and wrapped her arm tightly around the girl’s waist so the girl is forced to walk in front of her. She tried to squirm her way free, but Lyra refused to budge. Clingy Brat then tried to step on her feet so hard with hopes that she would let go. Oh well, I guess I have to resort to that.
“OWWWW!” the girl yelped. Lyra has pulled her right arm back until she felt that the arm might come out of the socket. “I swear, you’re worse than my little brother when I had to give him a bath,” she whispered gravely in her ears. “If you don’t start behaving any time soon, I will make the next one a whole lot worse.”
She stopped screaming but continued to pout. At least it is tolerable. Keeping her grips on her, Lyra looked up and smiled at the spectators. “Everything is fine here!” she assured them with a smile on her face. “We are just getting to know each other. In fact, she agreed to show me a tour of the place.” They gave her a dubious look but decided to continue their works so they would not get involved.
“Umm…” Lyra looked at the girl. The girl shifted uncomfortably. “I’ve never been outside of the hospital room.”
“So you’re telling me that you don’t even know your way around here?” The girl did not react. “That is pretty sad.” She looked around and immediately spotted an exorcist trying her best to sneak away without being notice – and failing miserably. Lyra recognized her as the girl standing next to Tensed-Up Boss. “Hey, you!”
Rinvak frozed. Please don’t let it be me. She turned around slowly and saw that Lyra was looking at her. “Yes, you!” she said firmly. “Give us a tour of headquarters.”
Rinvak replied, “Shouldn’t you rest first? You have been traveling for a long time now and you must be exhausted from the journey. We can give you a tour later when you are fully rested, Lyra.”
Lyra shook her head stubbornly. “Nope, I’m fine and I want to explore this place. Besides I think this girl needs to take a break.” She glanced at a displeased Reina. “If you are so worry about him, I can have a medical staff keep an eye on him. If your boy toy wakes up, the staff can call us and you can go running back here. Does that sound fine with you?”
Rinvak realized that she was looking at her now. Probably because Reina is refusing to talk to her. “Yeah, that sounds fine,” she finally answered and sighed. “Fine, I will give you a tour.” With that said, she reluctantly lead the way for a happy exorcist and her unhappy hostage.
“Oh, she is going to pay for that!” Eny ranted as she and Tabitha walked down the stairs. The latter just rolled her eyes and pretended to listen to the Bookwoman’s tirade. “She is going to regret ever messing with me!”
Looking ahead, Tabitha suddenly noticed Lyra’s Finder walking past by the stairs. “Hey, wait up!” she shouted as she scrambled down the stairs. She heard Eny’s yelling at her to stop but continued running. The Finder stopped walking and waited for them.
“You look like you need some help,” Tabitha said as she pointed at the large pile of luggage scattered around him. The Finder let out a deep breath of relief. “That would be greatly appreciative,” he said as they gathered them together. He looked at Eny and gasped, “Hey, I recognize you! You are that noisy girl from earlier!”
Before Eny could bite his head off, Tabitha covered her mouth and gave him the most innocent smile. “Oh yes, that’s her all right! By the way, my name is Tabitha and based on what you heard earlier, her name is Eny.”
“Nice to meet you, Tabitha and Eny,” the Finder gave them a slight bow of his head. “I am sorry about what happened earlier. Ms. Lyra has trouble remembering people’s names so she likes to give them nicknames, which are usually…how should I put it mildly…offensive. By the way, don’t try to get back at her. All those who tried caused their lives to be more miserable. The reason is that she believes that they are trying to be friendlier to her so she will give them more attention so dear God, don’t even try.”
“I see,” Tabitha began, but she knew that Eny did not believe a word that he said. “Oh yeah, before I forget…what is your name?”
“Oh, my name is Obedient One,” the Finder said without skipping a beat. Eny and Tabitha gave him a weird look. Eny coughed. “We meant your real name.”
The Finder laughed sheepishly. “I’m sorry. Let me start again…It’s Panic Butler.”
“That is still not your real name,” the girls repeated. He blushed with embarrassment. “My apologies. Let me think…” He finally gave a nervous chuckle. “To be honest, I have been with Ms. Lyra for over a year now that I have forgotten what my real name is. In fact, the last headquarter that I was in use my nicknames instead whenever they called me. If you give a minute, I am sure that I will remember.”
As the Finder began muttering to himself, Eny and Tabitha glance at each other and a horrifying thought filled their heads. Will that be our fate as well?
“And this is the Laboratory.” Rinvak pointed to the room to the left. Lyra nodded as she glanced into the room while Reina just followed unhappily. After walking for a while, Lyra has decided that it was okay to let her go since the hospital was far away now and the girl admitted defeat.
Getting unnerved by the awkward silence that followed, Rinvak continued, “As we walked up the stairs to the second floor, we can see the courtyard below. We used that as a training area sometimes if it is raining outside, but most of the time, it is used as a place to relax.” Looking down, she noticed the hole in the wall. Based on Ying’s report, that was where Flames broke that hole in the wall, which allowed the medical staff to escape… She squeezed her eyes shut and took a deep breath. Calm down, Rinvak. You can do this. “Now as we go through this corridor, we will enter the Gym…”
The tour was going along smoothly after that, which Rinvak very much preferred. Lyra and Reina (well, mostly Lyra) would ask questions once and awhile, but they were easy to answer. This is not that bad; maybe I should do this again. she thought to herself proudly. However, she started to regret that idea at the next destination.
“Is this the Library?” Reina asked quietly. She froze at the entrance of the library and saw several bookshelves toppled on top of each other. This is where I fought with Uriel. Without realizing it, she began walking around the room and avoiding the scattered books on the floor. She saw some dried blood on the wall – her blood – and came into a halt when she almost fell into the crater in the floor. In the aftermath, she flew down the hole to check to see if Uriel had fallen to his death but did not find any body, which meant that he had escaped.
She forced herself to stop looking down at the seemingly bottomless pit but she noticed the hole in the wall that leads to the secret chamber. That was the place where Lione had lost the ability to walk. If only she was there to help him, maybe he would still…
She did not realize that her body was trembling slightly, but Lyra must have felt that something was amiss because she said quietly, “I think we have enough of this place. Let’s go someplace else.”
The tour finally reached their final destination. As Rinvak opened the heavy ornate door, she looked at Lyra. “This is the women’s dormitory. We have ten beds; five on left and right sides of the room. Each girl has their own night stand, which include a small towel, pitcher, and basin, and an armoire to put her clothes away.” She pointed to the small wooden table next to the right side of the bed and to large wooden wardrobe which was on the left side of the bed. “Your bed is the third on the left based on the stack of luggage placed on that bed.”
Lyra nodded and walked over there. “Which one is yours?” she called out as she inspected her new bed. Rinvak answered, “Mine is the first one on the left.” Thinking about it, she decided to tell the rest. “Tabitha’s is right across from me while Eny’s is next to hers. And the bed between ours is Stephanie’s, but you won’t see her because…” She struggled to find the right word, “she along with her boyfriend got captured by the Noahs.”
“I am sorry to hear that,” the new exorcist said apologetically. “I am sure that she is a very nice girl.” She decided to change the subject and called out to Reina who just stood at the doorway. “See? We have extra beds so you can sleep here whenever you need to take a nap if you want. You can take the one across from mine. Don’t worry; the bed is very comfortable compared to that hard chair you were sitting in earlier.” She pushed down on the fluffy mattress to prove her statement.
Zeran’s friend just nodded her head but continued to be silent. Sensing that she was still worried about him, Lyra piqued, “See? What did I tell you? Narki is fine. Nothing bad has happened to him or else someone would have called us during the tour, right?”
Reina muttered, “I guess you’re right…” She looked at Lyra reluctantly. “Thanks.” She turned to Rinvak and bowed her head. “Thank you for giving me a tour of this place. I believe that I now understand what all of you have been going through these past few days. I think I am ready to head back now.” Rinvak nodded and told Lyra, “I will show her the way back while you can unpack.” Lyra just nodded to show that she understood so the two girls started their walk back.
Rinvak sighed. As soon as they arrived at the hospital room, Reina immediately started running over to check on Zeran, who was, as Lyra has predicted, still unconscious. At least I can finally relax… she thought as she opened the door that led to the garden outside.
“Hey, Rin! Where have you been?” she winced when she saw Tabitha waving at her like crazy. Eny was with her and she looked very pleased with herself – Rinvak decided that she did not want to know – and Lyra’s Finder was with them as well. She plopped down on the bench next to them.
“I was giving a tour of the place for the new girl and Zeran’s friend,” she mumbled tiredly. Tabitha gave her a look. “So the incident in the hospital was true?” Rinvak raised her eyebrow. Words spread really fast. “I don’t want to talk about it. And why are you so happy?” she snapped at Eny who was talking to herself.
“Oh, nothing,” she boasted happily, “except that little wench will feel my wrath. I have placed a nice surprise in one of her belongings. I can’t wait to hear her screams!” Eny started to laugh evilly that Rinvak and Tabitha became uncomfortable and looked away.
She noticed Lyra’s Finder muttering to himself, “I think it starts with a ‘G’ or was it an ‘H’?” He looked like he was concentrating so hard that he did not pay attention to anything that they said earlier. “What’s up with him?” she asked finally.
Eny answered with a snicker, “Oh, he is just trying to remember his name. Apparently, he has forgotten it ever since he was with that witch.” Rinvak gave them a “You got to be kidding me” look but they nodded with great seriousness. “How long has he been doing this?”
Looking at the clock, Tabitha replied, “For over a half an hour now.”
Lione looked out of his office window and took a deep breath. He could not stop himself from staring out to the ocean and wondered if that green-haired pirate is doing well. Closing his eyes, he allowed himself to take in the scene. Everything was peaceful again, which he enjoyed wholeheartedly. A knock on the door interrupted that serene moment unfortunately. “Come in!” he shouted, but he has a feeling that he already knew who it was.
A smiling Lyra opened the door and walked into the room. She was carrying her anti-Akuma weapon and a satchel bay hung from her shoulder. He pointed to the chair right in front of his desk, but she ignored the invitation. Instead, she just sat on top of his desk and crossed her legs – not that he was surprised. “I think we should have a little celebration,” she said with a wink. “I got this when our ride stopped at the Caribbean islands to restock on supplies…” She opened the satchel bag and pulled out two small glasses and…
“A bottle of rum? Lyra, you’re a life saver!” Lione said happily. She gave him a rueful grin as she pulled it into the glasses. “But I thought you cannot drink any alcohol since you always pass out after drinking one shot.”
“I know,” she began as she gave a cup to him and raised hers up, “but you are going to drink mine. After all, it has been over three years since we last met. Cheers?”
“Cheers!” They toasted their glasses and Lione drank his glass. After he finished his share, Lyra gave hers for him to drink up. “Sorry that the rum is lukewarm,” she apologized. “I was planning to put it in the icebox, but I heard from Friendly Greeter (Wesley) that everyone was hiding alcohol away from you. Honestly, don’t they know that a leader has his needs? You should charge them for insubordination! I should discipline them.”
Lione gave a weak protest, “They have my best interests in mind.” But Lyra just rolled her eyes and muttered, “Whatever you say.”
“Anyway,” he cleared his throat, “I heard about the hospital fiasco.” He gave her a disapproving look. “You should know that using physical force to make a girl do what you want is wrong.”
Lyra just shrugged. “Oh puh-lease. We were just having fun, and besides, I thought she needs a change of scenery.” Lione just looked at her silently and sighed. He knew better than to scold her because she would just tune him out and does something more outrageous the next time. Based on experiences, he knew the best thing to do is humor her. Now that he thought about it, Headquarters probably sent her here since he knew how to handle her.
“By the way, what is up with Old Hag?” He has a feeling that she was talking about Madeline, who was around the same age as he, which meant that she was not THAT old. “She reminds me of my mother! The way that she was glaring at me, I thought she wanted me to do penance or something like that.” That was probably true, Lione thought to himself, and knowing Lyra, she would make a show out of it.
“Let’s change subject,” he quickly interrupted. “This is supposed to be a happy occasion, remember? By the way, what happened to your dress?” He pointed to the multi-colored paint that splattered her exorcist uniform.
“Oh, this?” she glanced down at her dress. “Someone put an exploding paint bomb in one of my suitcases, and when I opened it, it exploded all over my clothes.”
Hearing that, Lione immediately knew the culprit. “It has to be Eny.” He noticed Lyra gave him a puzzled look and clarified, “Noisy Munchkin.”
“Ah…her,” Lyra nodded with a far-off look on her face as she placed her hand under her chin. “I will have to think of doing something nice for her then.”
“Please don’t,” the Branch Leader begged as he covered his face. “I don’t want to have another headache today.”
Expecting a snarky comeback, he was startled to find Lyra’s face was a few inches (centimeters) away from his face. “Wh-what are you doing?” he asked nervously as she was studying him with a great intensity.
“I knew that you were acting weird as soon as I met you,” she mumbled. Suddenly, she has a huge grin on her face. “I knew it!” she exclaimed. “You finally got a girlfriend!”
“What!?” Lione tried to back his wheelchair away but to no avail since he just backed himself to the wall. “Don’t be ridiculous, Lyra!” She continued to stare at him and admonished, “Don’t lie to me, Lione! You know that you are a horrible liar especially around me.” She gave him a pleading look. “Besides, you promised me that if you ever find a girl, you would tell me about it, remember?”
“So what types of girl do you like, Overprotective Archeologist?” Lione turned his head and looked at Lyra whose head was resting on her arms. They were admiring the endless ocean on the second floor deck of the ship and having a conversation about random nonsense when she asked that question.
“Types of girl?” She nodded and tilted her head toward him. He thought for a little bit and admitted, “To be honest, I never have a girlfriend before.” She gave him a pitiful look. “Wow, you are more pathetic than I thought.”
He frowned at that comment but decided to ignore it since he has no idea what to say to that blunt response. “Don’t worry!” He looked to see the girl was smiling at him. “I’m sure you will find one sooner or later, but you have to promise me,” she moved closer to him and looked at him straight in the eyes, “that you will tell me everything about her. I have to give you my approval first.”
Lione gave a weak laugh. “Aren’t I older than you? You are acting like you’re my big sister.” She gave him a stern look. “Okay, fine. I, Lione Parcoeur, solemnly swear that if I ever have a girlfriend, I will tell Lyra Winslet so I can get her approval. Happy now?”
Lyra grinned. “You bet I am.”
“Yes, I remembered,” Lione said flatly. She smirked and began her interrogation, “Where did you first meet her and what is she like. Lover Boy?”
The Branch Leader answered, “I met her at a bar a few weeks ago. I was having…personal problems so I decided to take a break. While I was contemplating about my life, she noticed that I looked a little down and offered me a sip of her rum. I don’t remember much that night, but all I remember is that she has sea-green hair and a carefree personality.”
Lyra nodded as she listened to his words. “At least you got her name and you will see her again, right?”
Lione cleared his throat and grinned sheepishly. “I…err…was too drunk that I forgot to ask her for her name, and I probably won’t see her again since she is a pirate.” His confidante groaned, “I have a feeling that you were going to blow it! And here I thought that you might have a chance to not die a virgin! If only I was there…”
Lione became annoyed so he countered, “So what’s about your love life? Are you still following your so-called ‘Rules of Love’?”
Lione looked at his newfound friend and said dryly, “And based on how you are criticizing me, I bet you have plenty of boyfriends.” She gave him a modest smile and said casually, “I have dated five, but they are mostly my parents’ picks. However, I usually scared them away. In fact, my longest relationship lasted two months.” Seeing her personality, he actually believed her. “So what have you learned from your past relationships?”
Lyra looked at him and started to ponder. “Hmm…I guess that I know what I want from a guy. I have two criteria, in fact; I’ll call them my ‘Rules of Love’.” An amused Lione asked, “And what are they?”
She held out one finger. “Number One, I will never date a friend.” After looking around to make sure no one was there, she lowered her voice. “I once dated a friend, and I tell you this: he is a great friend, but a horrible boyfriend.” Since she did not elaborate, Lione decided not to ask. “And the last one?”
“I will never a guy who is older than me,” she said as she held up two fingers. “I don’t know why but they tend to be so boring and take life too seriously. Even their conversations are so dull.” Lione has no idea why but felt like he had to apologize (maybe it was because he was twenty-seven years old). “It’s okay, Mr. Never Been Kissed; you’re an exception. At least you have an exciting life.”
“So you like younger men because they have so much fun?” he inquired. She nodded but added, “Plus I can easily boss them around.”
She shook her head. “Unfortunately, I am too busy fighting Akuma to think about my love life. Furthermore, it would complicate my life more than necessary.” Lione gave her an evil grin. “Are you sure? And what’s about your Finder? You seem to be having fun messing with him,” he teased.
Lyra started laughing so hard that she has to hug her waist because it hurt so much. “You mean my babysitter?” she finally gasped. “No way! One thing, he is such a party pooper and he acts WAY too old for his age.”
“But enough about our sorry love life, how are you holding?” she said seriously as she glanced at his legs. “It is probably rough for you not to be able to walk.” Lione became somber but said quietly, “I’m still not used to this yet, but I will manage. Right now I am still trying to find a way to alter my fighting style.”
He became depressed thinking about it. If I was more careful and did not get distracted by Father Franceso’s Bible, I would have never been in this position. This thought has sometimes entered his head whenever he has trouble sleeping or thought about what happened.
*smack* Lione felt a light hit on his head and looked up to see Lyra’s worried face. “I never saw you this down before,” she said concernedly. “It is hard to imagine you like this, Angsty Cripple.” He opened his mouth to say something but changed his mind. For some reason, he did not feel comfortable talking about his situation right now.
“Here.” Lyra gave him another glass of rum. “I know that drinking your sorrow away is a bad idea, but I will have an exception.” He took it readily and gulped it down. Looking at the clock, he mentioned, “It is almost time for dinner. We better get ready.”
She nodded and jumped off the table when he stopped her. “Wait. Where are you going to hide that bottle of rum? You can’t hide it here because everyone searches my office to confiscate any alcohol.”
“I realize that,” she replied. “In fact, I know a perfect place to hide it. No one will expect it.” He listened carefully as she whispered, “I placed it in that missing girl’s closet; if I specify, I think I will make you blush.” Lione did not know whether or not she was kidding.
As he wheeled his way to the door, he stopped himself when he saw his appearance in the mirror. “I can’t go down there now!” he exclaimed to Lyra. “My face is too red that they will get suspicious.”
Lyra deliberated for a little bit but finally got an idea. “Don’t worry! If they asked, I will tell them that I told them some embarrassing stories that cause you to blush.”
The cafeteria was crowded as usual when Tabitha and company entered the room. They finally found an empty table and sat down to eat. “Thank God!” Rinvak muttered as she chow down on her lobster roll, “I’m starving!” At the corner of her eyes, Tabitha spotted Reina getting her dinner and walking down the aisle, which was a surprise since this was the first time she saw her outside of the hospital.
Some of the medical staff saw her and invited her to sit down with them. She chatted with them for a little bit but declined, saying that she wanted to eat in Zeran’s room. As she watched Reina waved goodbye, Tabitha mused that it was a start.
A little later, she saw Lione and Lyra entered the room. Madeline immediately walked over to them and gave a suspicious glance at Lione when she saw his face. “It’s okay, Strict Mother,” Lyra said without skipping a beat, “I just told him some embarrassing stories especially about my feminine problems, if you know what I mean.” This caused Lione to blush even harder and Madeline looking embarrassed for him. After telling Lyra not to do that again, she wheeled an extremely red-faced Lione to a table.
Tabitha suddenly realized that the new girl was scanning around room and stopped at her direction. She grinned and walked over toward them. That was when Tabitha noticed that her dress was covered with multi-color coating of paint. “Pssst,” she hissed at Eny, “Earth to troublemaker, she is coming this way.”
The Bookwoman shrugged. “So?” She grabbed another bite of her clam chowder. “I’m not scared of her. If she wants to do something bad to me, I will fight back.” Why can’t she let this go? Tabitha glanced at Rinvak who just shook her head. Well, I should be happy that I am not her target anymore.
“Hello!” They looked up to see Lyra smiling cheerfully at them. “Hello,
they echoed back. “Um…do you want to have a seat?” Tabitha asked nervously. For some reason, she felt a terrible feeling of dread.
“It’s okay,” Lyra answered. “I already have a table.” She turned her glance toward Eny. “Well, hello again, Noisy Munchkin!” Eny just grunted, but Tabitha noticed that she tensed up. “I heard that you are the one who caused my clothes to be like this.”
“And what are you going to do about it?” the Bookwoman challenged. Lyra just smiled. “I just wanted thank you. I have always hated the blandness of the exorcist uniform that this really brightens it up. To show my gratitude, I have ordered the staff to destroy all of your clothes and give you new ones. Let me show you one.” She pulled out a pink frilly dress that only a baby would wear and gave it to a vivid Eny. “I think this matches your personality perfectly!”
As she walked away, Eny threw the clothes down to the floor with great fury. She was about to jump over the table, but the two exorcists and several Finders restrained her. A sudden shout caused everyone to stop what they were doing except for Lyra who continued to walk to her table with a look of great satisfaction on her face.
“I finally remember it now!” Everyone looks at Lyra’s Finder who was jumping up with joy. “I just remember my name; it’s John Smith!”
Everyone turned to Lyra’s direction with great incredulity. How could she forget such an easy name?
That's the end of the chapter! I hope you enjoy it even though it is just a character's introduction and boring chit-chatter.
Lyra and Lione's past will be more detailed in a later chapter. I decided to have a little sneak peek of it and to show some interactions that they have during their first meeting.
BTW, Eny is forced to wear those clothings for a while now, but everyone else will find her to be adorable. I think Lyra and Eny's interaction will be entertaining to read.
Anyway, excuse me while I .
Last edited by rhapsody blue; June 29, 2007 at 11:28 PM.
very long.... could you make an extra text file of it next time? all this open spoiler/close spoiler click stop the reading flow a bit ^^
anywho great and funny chapter (poor Eny XD)
I like Lyra she makes the exorcist's life more colourfull
Either you or your sister, snooge....both of you are pros in writing such gorgeous and amazing chapters. <3 <3 <3 I love them. So professional. You really do not want to become an author, haha?
Arghs, it could not be helped but a big, big msile flitted over my face when I read that Lyra sees a pirate ship xD. Great. The chaarcter's interaction was superb and Lyra is really a person you won't forget so easily. ^__^
Thanks for the compliment. Sorry about the length; I believe that my sister pmed you a copy of the chapter. When I started writing, I would be thinking, "What would happen if so and so interact?" and added some more details. Before I knew it, it was around 21 pages.
Well, since Lyra and her Finder are arriving in a ship, I thought it would be perfect if she saw Anlen's pirate ship.
I think I am going to write Lyra and Lione's past as an omake for Vol. 4 since it does not really advance the plot. I already have my outline done so I better start writing the story.
Yeah, it's unbelievable how long a chapter can become if you have ideas and ideas and ideas you wanna write down immediately. Same with my current chapter, I am writing and writing and writing and haven't reached the half of it up to now xD.
I am looking forward to Lione's and Lyra's past ^___^.