Metaworld Chronicles

by

Wutosama

Chapter 6 - It takes Three to Tango  

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A note from Wutosama

edited 07/12/18

There's blood on her sheets.
That is, Gwen's scraped knee had bled over her sheets.

Pulling the gauzy cotton painfully from her skin, she stripped the linen from her bed. The last thing Gwen wanted to hear was her father's new bimbo having a crack at her bloody sheets.

Gwen took a moment to compose her thoughts.
Yesterday was behind her, and today was a new day.
Shit happens. At work, at home, at the bar.
But life had a habit of going head regardless.

While discretely dealing with the evidence, she mentally listed critical events moving forward:

1. Register with the school's dorms.

2. Sort out accommodation, hopefully with Yue.

3. Move stuff to the dorms and leave Morye behind forever.

4. Prepare for two years of Spellcraft boot camp.

5. Attend University - AGAIN. Become the greatest Mage of her generation.

6. Earn millions or billions, whose's counting?

7. Buy a new bayside house and retire with two cats. MAGICAL ONES.

8. Life, back on track!

Well, she snorted. Maybe just the first four for now.
That, and she needed a hot shower.

The tap screeched; a torrent of lukewarm water brought back her motivation for living. Gwen washed off the grime and dirt, making sure to pick apart her wounds for whatever part of Hyde Park that came home with her.

Her mangled dermis stung like a bitch.

Knowing that her father and brother were out, she allowed herself the liberty of walking around the apartment in her towels, enjoying a glass of cold milk as her injury aired out. The cramped abode had no large windows and thus offered no risk of unwanted exposure.

When she had sufficiently dried herself, Gwen folded away her Miu-Miu dress for dry cleaning, packed away her shoes after applying some fix-it polish, and dressed in a cheap linen skirt hanging droopily just above her wounded knee.

I was a wizard once, but then I took a Magic Missile to the knee. She mused alone before becoming even more depressed.

She rummaged through her closet and found the school diary, an old thing that they gave out every year. Gwen scanned the pages, found Yue’s number, then dialled it into the ancient corded phone that they kept near the kitchen.

"Yue, it's me."

“Hello? Who's this?” Yue’s voice sounded suspicious.

"It's me, Gwen," Gwen appended just in case.

"Bloody hell, Gwen," Yue groaned. "I've been trying to call your Message Device since yesterday! Did you hear about our dorm arrangement?!"

"Dorm arrangement?"

"YEAH!" Yue's voice blasted her over the speaker. "It's bullshit!"

"Wha?" Gwen was now thoroughly confused.

"Didn't you check your phone?" Yue asked, "They sent out a Message yesterday."

"Ah...." Gwen knew then that she had to share. "My phone. Right. Well, I got a hell of a story to tell..."

 

The Message had informed students that they had to find a roommate or be assigned one. Furthermore, registration was on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Thus far, barring three misfits, all the students had already registered.

Misfit One was Yue, who had been waiting on Gwen, who had been AWOL.

Misfit Two was Gwen, who was having suicidal thoughts.

Finally, there was misfit Three, the quiet Elvia, whom despite her sudden, unexpected fame, had no friends with whom to share a room.

As such, the trio received the use of a staff room where all three would have to share a common area, with the advantage of having an ensuite to themselves. The news would have been a remarkable boon for Gwen and Yue, but now they had a tag-along - Elvia Lindholm.

Yue continued to rant in that endearing but offensive vernacular of hers as Gwen searched her memory for information on their third wheel. Elvia was the kind of girl that was ever present but never seen or heard. She tried to recall the girl's face, but remembered only long, ash-blonde bangs that covered her eyes. She seldom spoke, and rarely interacted with others except when necessary, when she did, her soft voice that made one strain to hear. She was short for her age, maybe edging past a meter-fifty, skinny too, giving the impression of one much younger.

That was it. That was all Gwen knew about this girl. A vague idea of what she looked like, and her unassuming hairstyle.

"Right? RIGHT?" Yue demanded on the other end of the phone.

"Yep, total bull," Gwen replied, having missed about half of what Yue had just splurted.

"So how about you?" Yue asked, her voice becoming tender. "Shit's pretty shitty, but it doesn't stop us from having a nice meet up on the city right? Wanna talk?"

"I think I had enough of the city," Gwen replied. "Love to meet up though, what you got in mind?"

"Wanna check out the dorm then?" Yue replied. "You gonna bring any furniture? I think the mail said all the usual furnishings are standardised, but you get to bring some crap along anyway, I wanna see how much room we have."

"Its close to the school, yeah?"

"Pretty much, its the apartment block directly behind it."

Gwen thought about it. She could walk to the station and catch a bus direct, as it was a weekday.

"Alright, see you there in an hour?"

"Cool, I am shouting you lunch," Yue added.

"No need."

"Too bad," Yue insisted sweetly. "After what you went through, you could use some sweet, sweet calories."

Gwen smiled.
There was a reason she thought of Yue so often, even after they went their separate ways.

“Cheers, luv. See ya."

Gwen hung up and felt far less fatigued than before.

She was ready for a bit of that soulful healing they sang about in songs.

Unlike yesterday, it only took her a few minutes to get ready, no need for makeup or lashes, just a dab of lipgloss, a quick hammering of her unruly long hair, and she was out.

Ignoring her smarting knee, Gwen pushed past the pain and made haste for the familiar comfort of her dear friend.

When the bus pulled up to the school gate, Yue was already waiting for her. It was break time for the juniors, and the fire Evoker already had a dozen of them making moon-eyes at her. The ones closest to Yue and trying to strike up a conversation were all girls, adorable juniors who wanted to know the secret of her Awakening. The boys hung back more apprehensively - Yue's reputation for having a barbed tongue preceded her.

"Gwen!" Yue breathed a sigh of relief.

"Hey." Gwen waved back.

"Who's that?" Someone asked.
"Gwen Song."
"A nobody..."
"I heard she’s a NoM."
"What a nuisance," a girl added unkindly.

"Shut your pie holes!" Yue shouted at the juniors, silencing them at once. "Stupid fuckwits."

Had Gwen done what Yue just did, some of the juniors would have demanded to duel her. Yue, however, possessed the countenance of a Conjurer barking orders at her summons.

"Let's go." Yue urged Gwen to move.

"Are they staying together?" a student demanded incredulously.
"That's so unfair," a junior wailed.
"I want to room with Yue..."

Yue dragged Gwen along until they were out of sight.

"You alright?" she asked, a little guilty for the display.

"Yeah, I am fine," Gwen replied, glad to be out of the limelight.

The duo made their way past the schoolhouse and into the residential zone that Blackwattle had prepared for its Spellcraft students. It was an old apartment, likely built in the first reclamation in the 80s, with a distinct Brutalist facade which said, come wind, rain, or Thunder Elemental, I am here to stay.

The building's levitation platform was a freight-lift, rumbling unhappily up the shaft until it reached the top level. The staff room was no penthouse, but it offered a beautiful view of the city and the Barrier Shield that extended into the harbour.

At the entrance of 1201, they were surprised to find that the door was unlocked.

The girls exchanged a glance, then turned the handle.

What greeted them was the small figure of a girl with ash blonde hair, holding a dress in one hand and a coat hanger in another. Their intruder stared back, eyes wide with shock, the very picture of a doe the moment before it was incinerated by a Scorching Ray.

“… ...” there was a silent scream. The girl had made the right expression but what emerged instead was a kind of half choked, half muffled yelp.

“Hello there…” Gwen said.

“…”

“I am Gwen Song."

“…”

We are going off to a good start. Gwen thought.

“You a mute or something?” Yue asked suddenly.

“…” Gwen pulled her friend's elbow. Elvia is a healer! She's a koala bear! You (Yue) can't go around bullying koalas.

“…. No.” A soft voice whimpered, sharp and high pitched, like the trill of a nightingale.

“You got like, a condition or something?” Yue kept on with her interrogation. “Don't you think it's good form to ask our permission before you start unpacking your things?”

Elvia looked up; her eyes brimming with apprehension.

To their surprise, their intruder had a small face that was alluring and white, pale like milk; possessing a button nose that gave her the impression of a pixie or a fairy. Her lips, pink and delicate, was also pale and bloodless. Combined with her luminous ocean-blue eyes, she reminded Gwen of those uncanny character-actors who played Disney princesses.

Gwen's heart melt like Devondale butter under a December sun.

The stunned expression, the soft eyes, the pale face - her maternal instincts were tripping every alarm in her body. Yue was an only child, and she couldn't possibly understand how Gwen felt. Gwen had raised Percy in her mother’s absence and desired more than anything to have a cute little sister she could hug and adore and cuddle.

Without a word, Gwen reached out to Elvia and pulled her to her chest.

“Yue, not another word.” Gwen made eyes at her friend that said she'd take care of it.

Yue maintained her cynicism as Gwen felt Elvia’s rigid body stiffen. The petite girl only reached her shoulders; her head was just the right height for Gwen to rest her chin. There was a delicious scent of expensive shampoo.

“There, there,” Gwen comforted the frightened little creature, gazing into Elvia’s eyes with her most sisterly expression. There was an attraction there, nothing unbecoming of course, but an attraction nonetheless. Gwen felt strangely drawn, as though something about Elvia completed her in an inexplicable way.

“I am sorry,” Elvia stammered. “I didn't want to be a bother when you two are moving in.”

“Is that right?” Yue demanded sceptically.

“It's fine.” Gwen gave both of the girls a reassuring glance. “We’re here to have a look at the room. You’re no bother. I am Gwen Song, and this is Yue Bai, her name means white moon.”

“The fire Mage?” Elvia asked, her eyes lighting up.

“The one and only.” Gwen nodded.

The girls measured one another with their eyes.

“I am Elvia Lindholm,” Elvia answered after an eternity. “It's a pleasure to meet you both.”

The diminutive girl looked up at Gwen.

“Where are you from?” Elvia asked in that soft timbre of hers.

It was not an unusual question. In an overtly multicultural city like Sydney, people were often inquisitive about where one was from, at least originally.

“I was born here, but my family came from all over,” Gwen satiated Elvia's curiosity. Her eyes, her height, her hair, nothing seemed to come as a racial set. “My mother is mixed South East Asian, my father is Russian - Chinese, from near the Sino Fault.”

Elvia’s mouth formed an ‘o’ of wonderment.

“You're so pretty.” Elvia blushed adorably, then noted that Gwen held her shoulders protectively.

“So tall,” the girl added enviously.

Yue coughed, thrusting out her best features.

“You’re … very pretty too,” Elvia added, her eyes becoming as large as ping pong balls. “I love your… erm…blouse.”

“I think we'll get along fine,” Gwen concluded with confidence.

“Like a house on fire,” Yue added with a grin that showed her pearly whites.

Elvia glanced at Yue shudderingly before being assuaged by Gwen that all evidence aside, Yue was not a deranged pyro.

Greetings accomplished, the girls went on to conduct the business of sharing a room. The spacious common area was divided into three sections, with each side having a bed, wardrobe, wall mounted cabinet and a study desk. The foot of the bed had an enchanted storage chest linked to their mana signature. The third wall contained the shared bathroom. The room furthermore possessed a small kitchenette, the kind one found in served apartments.

The girls soon agreed on their respective areas of privacy.

"Oh!" Elvia interjected. "Gwen! You're bleeding!"

Gwen looked down.

"Ah bugger," she cursed. Her wound was indeed weeping.

"Don't touch it." Elvia stopped her before Gwen could dab her knee with a tissue. "I can help."

Kneeling in front of Gwen, she placed her hands just above Gwen's wound.

"Healing Touch!"

A ticklish, tingling sensation crawled up Gwen's leg.

"Oh!" Gwen fought an impulse to kick out. The itching grew unbearable.

"All done!" Elvia stood back proudly.

Gwen looked down.

The scab fell away, revealing pink flesh.

HOLY SHIT! Her mind rioted.

REAL LIFE HEALING MAGIC?

 

"What do you like to eat?" Gwen asked the girls, flexing her knee. "My shout!"

After some deliberation, the trio made for Market City, where cheap, greasy food was sold daily by the ton.

"I don't usually eat out..." Elvia confessed, expecting mockery and displeasure.

"Yeah, I usually just eat home too," Gwen confessed in turn, somewhat misreading the sentiment. “It's much cheaper just to have toast."

"Oh, Gods," Yue, who was a foodie, rolled her eyes, "This one time, Gwen placed a piece of soft bread between two toasted multigrain bread, and called it a sandwich..."

"That sounds... delicious?" Elvia envisioned the spectacle in her head. "But can't you put something else in the middle?"

"This one time I put leftover stir-fry, it was awesome." Gwen’s morale had now recovered enough to revealing her culinary secrets. Her knee was 100% recovered. "Its even better if you can cram some SPAM in there."

Yue made a gagging motion, which made Elvia laugh. Her new roommates were far too comfortable with one another. The pacing of their interactions threw off her mental metronome immensely.

The girls made their way around town and were on their third serve of sweet nothings when Elvia announced that any more food and she would burst at the seams.

Beside her, Gwen and Yue continued to eat.

Elvia shuddered. The appetite of her new friends was a terrifying thing!

 

 

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A note from Wutosama

Chapter Ref ::  


Volume 1 Amazon (US) the book is in all markets as well.
Volume 2 Amazon (US) the book is in all markets as well.
 
V1 Google Play, iBook, Kobo, Nook and Playster Link
V2 Google Play, iBook, Kobo, Nook and Playster Link

Paper back in near future


Metaworld-Meta-fics :

Strictly CaliAn islander's Meta-journeyStrategic MagicThe Strange Life of an Elf From Sydney
"Strictly Caliban" From the always catty @Wandysama
And "An Islander's Meta-Journey" from young gun @Bartimeus
The Mysteries of Fudan, and Other Rumors From the Metaworld
Strategic Magic by kjoatmon
Farewells - The Strange Life of a Quarter-Elf From Sydney
Rise of a Magi by a Duck Mage (Rhein)


Metaworld Audiobook : 

AGROSQ Audio 


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About the author

Wutosama

Bio: I write on the phone and edit at home. Times are tough!

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