Demetrio was sitting at his desk inside his office. The desk was quite big, befitting the size of the Head of State’s responsibility. Several stacks of paper were on it. There were either ready to be checked or already checked, ready to be filled or already filled. The office was a cube in shape. Windows were present just behind Demetrio and a few photo frames were hanging on the wall. Demetrio was filling some documents with his always lacking emotions. After a moment, he stopped and put down his pen. His eyes then landed on the photo in a wooden frame on his desk. On the photo were two people. Demetrio, who seemed a bit younger, and-
A knock was heard on one of the two doors leading out of the room. Demetrio lifted his gaze before finally speaking. “Enter.”
The one who entered was Hakam Suri. He looked directly at Demetrio before closing the door behind him. His face was calm even if he looked a bit tired. Nevertheless, he stood in front of Demetrio. “Sorry for earlier. I didn’t know that Keller was planning this.”
“It’s fine. At least, this proved that Talia Chevalier has indeed powers that come from outside of this world and other worlds really exist. The problem is that Alan is really angry.”
Hakam sighed. Suddenly, his eyes lit up. “How went the discussion with Miss Chevalier? She seemed not hostile and not having any greed.”
“It went well. A bit too well.” Demetrio leaned forward and explained Hakam what Talia had told him about what was the role of a Protector and what they needed to fight against. Hakam was shocked by what he just heard. Silence fell inside the room for a few seconds before Hakam once again spoke up.
“Do you think that we should tell the other countries about the situation, and the existence of Talia Chevalier.”
“We already have our hands full with the criminal organizations that use abilities. We also can’t use the fact that Talia Chevalier lives here, so there is no point. There is just the problem of rumors about an ability-less person beating someone with an ability, but it should ok for the moment. From the way she acts, she would not act in case of political problems as our trump card. At least, for the moment we don’t have too much problem on this side. What worries me is the Energy Hunters.”
Hakam took a second before reacting. “But she said that it will take a lot of time before they will start appearing. What is the hurry?”
Demetrio’s eyes were focused on Hakam for several seconds as he seemed to think about something. His emotionless gaze had the power to put pressure on someone. Suddenly, he looked at the frame on his desk. Hakam looked at this, then his eyes opened wide. Demetrio started. “This afternoon, Elisa had another prediction.”
Cold sweats were forming on Hakam’s back. He waited for his superior’s next words in fright. ‘...Don’t tell me, the reason he could not come this afternoon-’
Demetrio was looking at the smiling beautiful girl that looked like a middle school girl. Her long hair was blond in color, while her eyes were blue. She had a brown teddy bear in her hands. Demetrio’s usual cold eyes were filled with warmth and concern when he was looking at the young girl. “ She told me that this was the scariest prediction that she ever had.
Talia landed in front of the bakery owned by Sanya’s family. The moment her feet touched the ground, she put down Sanya who was in her arms. However, Sanya didn’t let go of her. She placed her hand on her shoulder and used Talia as a support. “...I don’t know if it’s the most exciting or scariest moment in my life.”
Talia supported her with a worried face. “Sorry. I thought that it would be fun to jump from buildings to buildings. It’s also quite late, so I didn’t want you to come back too late.”
Sanya took a deep breath and straightened her body. ‘That’s not good. I have to toughen up. Living with Talia will be hard and limited if I remain so weak.’
Sanya learned today how strong Talia was, which made her a bit frustrated about her weakness. Of course, she knew that she could never be as strong as her and her goal was not strength from the start. But, working out more than what she was already doing was better than nothing. She looked at the time on her phone and sighed out in relief. “Just in time.”
Talia smiled as she faced her lover. She then closed the distance and put her hands on her cheeks to draw her closer. Sanya didn’t reject her and even lifted her head to make it easier. They closed their eyes as their lips touched. Talia brought her body closer and took Sanya into a hug as she kissing her lover repeatedly. Sanya was following her actions. She put her hands on Talia’s hips, not letting her leave.
After their faces were finally separated, Sanya put her head against Talia’s chest. Both of them had an expression showing their happiness. Talia started. “I wanted to kiss you all day long. I want to hold you close to me.”
Sanya’s cheeks reddened. In reply, she tightened her embrace. “Me too.”
Suddenly, a soft sensation tickled their ankles. They looked at the thing that was purring in joy while rubbing its puffy cheeks.”Meow.”
Fluffy Paw jumped to Talia’s shoulders and the massive ball of fur started playing with the girl’s short ponytail. The cat was maybe very fluffy, but it could easily jump high. Seeing her big cat with its swaying paw, Sanya could not help but laugh. Talia smiled as she patted the cat. Then, Sanya took the cat off her shoulder and brought it close to her. She stood in front of the bakery. “Now, I should go. Cats should not stay too late out.”
Talia smiled tenderly and kissed her once more on the forehead. “Have sweet dreams.”
“Good night.” Sanya replied back with a sweet smile. Talia’s figure vanished, leaving the blond haired girl with her cat. She looked at the surrounding for a moment before making her way to her house. Her face tensed when she was thinking of what was about to happen.
Sanya was inside her room. She had lighter clothing that before and she was sitting on her chair. “We didn’t specify a time. I hope this is not a problem.”
Suddenly, white particles filled the room just like the previous day, making Sanya’s heart skip a beat. After a moment, they settled down, creating the scene as what happened yesterday. A slightly see-through Lord was sitting on a round couch. His smiling face was directed in Sanya’s direction. “Hi.”
“Good evening.” Sanya greeted back. Then, Lord’s face turned serious.
“I didn’t activate the Time Cradle because Talia would notice. However, I did prepare something to prevent sound from coming out. Now, it is time to tal-”
“Wait, please!” Sanya interrupted him in a hurry. Lord tilted his head in wonder. In response, Sanya stood up and lightly bowed her head.
“I’m sorry about yesterday. I shouted at you even after knowing that you were the one that took care of Talia.” Lord seemed a bit surprised, but in the end, he just waved it off.
“Don’t worry about this. In fact, I should be the one apologizing. I needed to be sure that Talia would not be taken advantage of. But, it seems my worries were unneeded." Sanya sighed out in relief and smiled. Lord continued.
"Anyways, I'm about to tell you about Talia's powers. Are you ready to hear it?”
Sanya thought about it for a moment, then nodded firmly. Lord was pleased by her answer. "Let's get to the point."
Sanya looked at the floating transparent screen that had appeared in front of her. The screen was as big as a large television. The surface was white for the moment. “First of all, I have a question for you. Do you have things like this on earth.”
The screen flashed and a picture showed up on it. It was something that Sanya had never seen before. It was like a bipedal being enveloped in a dark mist. The scene seemed to take place in a massive storage room. The walls were grey in color and the material used looked like nothing Sanya known. The thing surrounded by the mist was also black in color. The mist was hiding a good portion of its body, but it was still visible. Honestly, Sanya was a bit scared by how savage this creature looked like.
It was 2 or 3 meters high. The overall body was humanoid, but a lot of details were showing that it was clearly not a human. The surface of the body was pure black skin. The muscular two arms and slightly bent legs ended with five sharp claws. The rest of the body was also a bit muscular. A thin and long tail sprouted out of the being’s waist, finishing with a spike. However, this was not the thing that scared Sanya the most. It was the head.
The head was also a bit similar to a human’s, except for some details. The opening of the mouth was a lot larger than for a human and the creature on the photo had several rows of razor-sharp teeth, like a shark. Two black twisted horns were coming out of its head, pointing forward. Compared to humans, it had not two, but three eyes. However, they were closed, making it impossible to see what those eyelids were hiding.
Sanya felt quite uneasy looking at this creature. This was the first time that she was looking at something that was both real and could have come from a horror movie. Nevertheless, she remained calm and answered Lord’s strange question. “No, we don’t have things like that on earth.”
“Is that so…” Lord was pensive for a moment, before looking at the screen once more. The screen then miniaturized, but the photo of the being was still present. He then asked Sanya another question.
“You have surely seen Talia using magic before, right? What is the color of mana?”
Sanya was remembering Talia’s display of power. She didn’t really know how mana looked like, but she recalled the blue particles that were coming from Talia when she had given her the bell. “...Blue?”
Lord’s face was expressionless as he lifted up his hand. White particles appeared on top of it. The same as what appeared when he appeared himself. The two of them were looking at them. “Mana is pure white. It’s an energy that allows magicians, and other mana users to reshape reality. There is no blue mana as far I know. At least, there was, until a few dozens of years ago.”
Sanya tilted her head as she somehow understood. “Do you mean Talia’s mana is not normal? What is the problem?”
“Sanya, the problem is not that Talia’s mana is blue, it’s the fact that Talia can use mana that is a problem.” Lord brought out another floating screen. On it was a model of a human body. Near the place where was located the heart was a white glowing stone. The stone was not very big, only the size of an infant's fist. Lord looked at the image.
“This is how mana is generally used for mortals. It’s stored and produced inside a mana crystal that is just near the heart. When the person needs to use mana as a fuel, it will be released from the crystal through tiny vessels throughout the body. To put it in another way, without this natural body structure, it’s impossible for someone to use mana. This type of body structure is called a mana circuit. Now, I have another question for you. Do humans in this world have a mana circuit?” Sanya immediately understood what he was implying. Her eyes frowned in confusion.
“Of course we don’t. Talia had also not it, but she is able to use mana. Did she not get it from you?” Lord shook his head.
“No, even if she asked me, I would have refused. This is too dangerous. The number of things that could go wrong is way too long to list. Anyways, let’s put this on the side for the moment. You also saw her Angel Exo-Skill, right?”
Sanya nodded in reply. “Yes, this blue tattoo-like thing on her back and arms. Force Control, if I remember correctly.”
“All the Angel Exo-Skills are crimson. None of them, even Force Control, are not blue in color. Only the Seraphim’s one is a golden orange. Also, to use an Angel Exo-Skill, one has to have angel’s wings. An angel uses its wings to extract energy from the world. Without those, it’s impossible.”
Sanya was lost in the conversation. From the start, Lord was denying all of Talia’s powers. “...And her physical strength?”
“I saw today’s fight with the blond haired young man. I don’t think a normal ability-less human can break the speed of sound even if they do a lot of training.” Lord sighed as he focused once more on the screen with the black creature. A lot of complex emotions were inside his reptile-like eyes. The screen became once more large, letting the two people see the brutal looking beast-like being.
Lord took a long look at Sanya for several seconds. Then, he closed his eyes and swept his finger once. The image on the screen changed. Not a lot, but enough to make Sanya stop breathing. Lord didn’t know if he should have been happy or guilty of her reaction.
“...No way.” The image was still showing the black creature. But, one simple additional detail changed everything.
“This color. It’s-” The creature had its three eyes open. They were in one simple color. A color that Sanya had known for a few years now. The hair color of the one that she loved the most.
“Yes, this is Talia.”
The black creature, Talia had eyes exactly the same color as her hair.