The little girl looked at Talia in an overexcited way. She flapped her feet back and forth while shouting. “How did you know I was going to warp here?! Are you the one that caused those space things?! Don’t tell me you als-”
The girl stopped midway. She tilted her head in surprise when she saw Talia’s blue hair. Talia chucked when she saw this adorable creature’s actions. She let her down and put her hands on her hips in a smug way. A split of a second later, objects appeared around Talia out of nowhere and rotated around her. There were sweets, flasks with colorful liquid inside, and finally a fluffy cat backpack. The species of the cat used as the model didn’t look like a cat from earth. The color used was a mix of silver and grey.
The black haired girl was captivated by the floating things, and especially by the cat backpack. Talia smiled and everything but the bag disappeared. She then made it float in front of the girl at arms reach. The girl took it and then looked up at Talia with an expecting face. “Is this for me?”
Talia patted her smooth hair. “Yes, it's a gift as a fellow cat lover. Your hoodie is very cute. Also, it's bad manners teleporting in a zone without authorization.”
The girl bloomed with a sunny smile.”Thanks, kind big sister! But, why does big sister has a kitty bag?”
Talia fixed her eyes on the cute bag. “...I also have a big sister that gave it to me. Now, you should go before those people take you for trespassing.”
The girl looked at the others around her and her eyes landed on Sanya’s shirt and more precisely at the school emblem. She then grinned and turned once again toward Talia. “See you next time!”
She then disappeared just like she appeared leaving everyone speechless. Talia also looked at the school emblem. ‘Don’t tell me…’
Talia stopped thinking about it and raised her eyes to look at Sanya. “Let's go.”
The others woke up with her words. Sanya was so shocked that she ran up to Talia and grabbed her sleeve. “W-Wait, Talia! Do you even know who is this girl?!”
Talia shook her head in denial. She was not surprised by Sanya’s reaction. It was true that Talia found that this little girl was quite a powerful space manipulator with quite the temperament for her young age. “No, I don’t know. Is she famous?”
Sanya calmed down after seeing Talia’s clueless face. She knew she didn’t remember most of the people in this world. So, she decided to help her by telling her the information that Talia lacked when she could. Of course, Talia could use the internet if she needed something, but Sanya wanted to be helpful and it was sometimes more useful to get information from someone close. She started to explain. “Her name is Ellen Euriel, and she is an S-ranked ability user and a child genius in mathematics. Her ability Field Teleportation allows her to teleport herself and things around her in a radius of a few hundred of meters.”
Talia nodded in understanding. “I see. Well, it’s not rare for experts of space manipulation to be genius in science. The quantity of data and computing for a blind warp is not a joke. One mistake and it’s easy to find yourself in a wall.”
Even after Talia’s explanation, Sanya still tilted her head. “I understand, but how did you know that she would appear here. Even she was surprised.”
“I told you about my long distance sword arts, Sky Slashing Blade, right? By training in this, I had to develop a hypersensitivity to space changes. So, I might not be able to do a lot of space manipulation, but I have no problem detecting them.”
Sanya nodded before adding a question that came to her. “From what you just said, Lord should also be very smart in science, right?”
Talia seemed to search the correct words to answer. “...It’s different for him as he mainly uses magic, making him an unparalleled master in the field of magical equipment. During those 50 years, I have never seen someone close to his level. Of course, he is also very knowledgeable in science, but there are others better than him. Anyway, should we go?”
Talia looked at the shocked Yui, and Darius, who had been cautious about the situation the whole time. He stayed on alert, ready to act if needed. But, it seemed that it was useless to worry. “...Please don’t do strange things like what just happened during the meeting.”
The tension lessened as they resumed their way to the meeting point.
Soon enough they arrived in front of double door guarded by two guards. They opened the doors and gave a salute when they saw Darius. When he arrived at the threshold, he stepped away to let Talia go in first. “This is the room for the meeting.”
Talia turned around and whispered to Sanya in a gentle voice. “Stay close to Darius and Yui.”
Sanya nodded with her fists clenched in slight tension. Talia patted her head and went to make her way inside the room. The others followed behind her. The first thing that greeted her when she entered was a big round table of around 3 meters in radius made of grey marble. Stacks of documents and a few laptops were scattered on top of it. At this table were adults dressed mostly in suits and other official clothes. She counted 14 men and women, and 3 vacant chairs. One man was standing looking in her direction. The second thing that she noticed was that quite a high number of guards were present in the room. They looked attentive about her movements.
The other people seated around the table landed their eyes on Talia the moment she went in. After sweeping all of them with an expressionless glance, Talia made her way in front of the table. Her attitude was totally different from before. Talia attracted so much attention that Sanya’s presence was barely visible. This was the Talia the Protector of Worlds, her serious self.
Talia frowned when she had a look at all those people. They might have seemed witty and careful, but none of them looked like Sanya’s description of Demetrio Allocca. Even more, There were 3 vacant seats. One for the one person up, surely one for her and finally one should belong to Demetrio Allocca.
When Talia arrived in front of the table, the people seated all stood up. The one already up, a man in his late 50, approached her in a friendly way. At around 1m80, He had combed grey hair and a short beard and was wearing a brown suit. A gentle aura emitted from him. “Nice to meet you, I’m the Prime Minister of the Union, Hakam Suri.”
“Talia Chevalier, nice to meet you.”
The two of them exchanged a handshake. After this, Hakam turned around and extended his arm in the others’ direction in order to introduce them. “Here are the different ministers. We were waiting for you.”
Talia gave once more glance to them before turning her eyes on Hakam. “Where is Demetrio Allocca? He is the one that was contacted by Lord.”
Hakam had a troubled expression as he searched for the right words. “He has...a very urgent matter to attend. He should come here later. However, don’t worry. He shared all the information that he was told. Anyway, let’s just don’t stand there. Please, do sit.”
He indicated to Talia a chair with a smiling face. Then, he went to sit in his own chair. Talia followed him with her gaze, then sat down on the chair, followed by the others. The other vacant seat was directly across the table and Hakam was sitting on the chair on the right. Talia crossed her legs in a calm way. ‘He might seem gentle like this, but not everyone can become the prime minister of an entity like the Union. At least he has the intelligence of hiding his true face, unlike this guy.’
Talia looked with the corners of her eyes at a man on her right. He seemed to be in his late forties. His slightly chubby body was clad in a grey suit. His fine mustache was fitting him, but the wrinkles on his face made him slightly unapproachable. Talia decided to ignore him for the moment. From the way he acted, she was sure that he was the George Keller that she was told about and he had something ready for her. She had least wanted to proceed with the current affair before creating troubles.
Hakam coughed once as to attract the attention on him. He was looking at documents in his hand, then shifted his attention on Talia. “...This situation is a first for us. Truth to be told, it’s still hard to believe that other worlds exist and that you came back in this world as a...Protector of Worlds?”
In reply, Talia just heaved her shoulders. “You should have seen the footage inside the Chamber, right?”
Her words made most of the ministers change their expression. Hakam seemed more serious than before. “So, you noticed the surveillance system”
“I have to grant you that they were nicely hidden as it took me a few seconds before noticing them. But, just what is the necessities to this? Monitor abilities users in the Union?” The usage of abilities was restricted in the Union. Of course, it was possible to use them in public if they were not harmful in any way. For those that wanted to still use them in public, there were ways to do it, like going to a public Abilities Test Chamber. There were some here and there all around the Union City. Most of the people didn’t use them as their ability was not dangerous, making them usable outside.
Hakam sighed as he explained. “That’s right. After the Chambers were installed, some didn’t hesitate to use them for crimes as they were cut from the outside world. The fact there are devices for surveillance is not really a secret, but we try to limit this knowledge to reduce the impact that they have on people as to not disturb them too much. But, we had to install something to prevent abuse of power.”
“Like what happened yesterday, right? It’s for this reason that you were so fast to come.” Talia didn't really like their decision about this messed-up surveillance system. She could not understand the point of not telling publicly that they monitored the inside of the Chambers. However, she also was not so interested because she had not an ability, but she still found that the army arrived quickly yesterday.
Hakam turned toward a woman on his left. “Case of bullying using abilities is unfortunately not rare these days. However, it’s uncommon for it to happen between a fairly high ranked ability user and someone without an ability. From what we heard, the Educational department was about to sent someone to stop it, but when the Minister of the Education saw that it was you, she told the 9th unit to directly go there as they were already on the way. Anyway, it is not the main topic of today.”
Hakam stopped smiling as he had a serious face. Everyone around the table looked intensely at her. “What is really the role of a Protector of Worlds and what do you want?”
Talia remained calm under those stares. She closed her eyes and stated her answers. “A Protector of Worlds is someone that protect a world from being destroyed from inside. As for what I want. I just want to do my work without disturbances or changes in my daily life. That’s it.”
Silence filled the room as they were thinking about her words. They didn’t really know what she meant by protecting the world from inside, but her demands were very simple. No wealth, power nor fame. However, there was one simple, but important thing that all had in mind but none of them wanted to say it. All of them, except one.
“And what prove us that you have the strength to do it?” Everyone turned their eyes on the man that just spoke. Georges Keller was looking at Talia aggressively.
“What proves us that all of this is real? It should be easy for an illusion-oriented ability user to somehow create a fake lizard man.”
Hearing his words, Talia's eyes narrowed. Sanya who had been on the side the whole time was agape looking at George. ‘...He just called the one that took care of Talia for 50 years a fake lizard man. Even I don’t think that I could stop her this time.’
The guards and Darius noticed the changes in Talia’s mood. They became tenser as they were ready to act. Darius was looking at Sanya on his side, ready to ask her to calm the situation if needed. George didn’t intend to stop as he continued. “It’s not to be disrespectful to Demetrio Allocca, but with a good amount of preparation and high ranked abilities users, it should be easy to fool someone.”
Hakam glared at George. “Watch your mouth. Are you trying to say that she intended to fool us? Then, why would ask for nothing special? Also, you clearly saw the tape yesterday. How do you explain this?”
George became more passionate in his speech. “The other student was only a D-ranked. There are a lot of wind ability user in the Union City. You even just said that the surveillance system is not a secret. There are a bunch of ways to do this. I’m sure I’m not the only to think this.”
Some ministers averted their eyes. It was true that a majority of them didn’t really believe that there existed other dimensions. Indeed, Talia, as a high schooler, seemed really calm and sure about what she was talking about, but this was not sufficient for them.
The center of the problem, Talia, suddenly sighed. “Aaaah…”
Everyone waited in silence for her reaction. She looked up at the plain ceiling with a smiling face. “Really, Barostl was right. Unlike him, I only acted as a delegation twice. But, it seems it’s the same no matter the world.”
Talia’s monologue resonated through the room, bringing each people to pay attention. Sanya clearly recognized her girlfriend’s current expression. It was the one that she made when she was remembering her comrades.
“I can’t blame them, for sure. But, they should at least be frank if their objective is to test my capacities. This would prevent a lot of troubles for me and for them.”
‘I could spend more time eating sweets while cuddling with Sanya.’
Suddenly, Talia stood up, making the already tense atmosphere even more nerve-wracking. The guards had their hands on their weapon just in case. Darius, who knew clearly Talia was stronger than him, prayed that Talia would remain calm, and the trembling Yui was looking alternatively at everyone.
Talia landed her stare on George. “You mean that if I prove that I, an ability-less person, has powers not from this world, you will believe me, right?.”
George also stood up and snorted. “Yes. I, and I am not the only one, would not believe without seeing it with my own eyes.”
“I bet you have a simple test for this.” In response to her words, Hakam slammed on the table as he stood up. He looked at George with a severe face. “What is the meaning of this, Keller?!”
“I only prepared someone perfect for a test.”
Talia was not a bit intimidated by the situation. “Who?”
George’s eyes were resolute as his reply shook the room. “The world strongest man.”