I let Rose go, after giving her a quick squeeze. “I am glad you are ok.”
She looks into my eyes, almost as if she was searching for a lie in my words.
Before she can respond, I speak up to the whole room. “Hey mom? Dad? Do you think you could give me and Rose some alone time? I need to ask her something.”
Elizabeth opens her mouth to argue, but before she can, Dad puts his hand on her shoulder. She instantly becomes quiet and walks away with a pout on her face.
Once the door closes I turn to Rose and say, “That wasn’t the first time you killed someone.” I state it as a fact while I study her searchingly.
She looks at me, waiting for me to say more, but at my quiet gaze, she sags into herself a little, before opening her mouth. “No, it wasn’t my first time.”
“So you aren’t a virgin then? Darn.” At her sad stare, I give a small sigh and whisper “Admittedly, that wasn’t funny. But you can’t blame someone for trying to bring a little levity to this situation.”
We both stay there in silence for a moment before a small laugh escapes her lips.
Then she starts laughing out loud, it was a sad, hurt laugh and towards the end she starts crying.
I pull her to me again as she cries into my shoulder. When she starts to quiet down I hold her away from me and say, “Tell me what happened.”
“I-I don’t know where to start.”
I wipe a tear away from her cheek. “Well, generally people start at the beginning, then they go through the middle until they reach the end.”
A small smile creeps onto her face.
The smile disappears as she starts telling me her story, “I guess It started when I was five years old. M-My dad got involved in a small gang. That gang was later absorbed into a larger criminal organization. Due to his involvement with that organization he made sure I received training that would allow me to defend myself.” She stops for a moment deep in thought. “When I turned eight, things started to change. My father was going through the ranks of the organization and I was starting to understand exactly what it was that he did. So like the entitled brat I was, I went out to the place that he had said he was working, so that I could give him a piece of my mind.
“It’s only now that I realize how lucky I was not to be stopped by anyone, after all, he wasn’t working in the best part of town. When I got there, I found my father and another man arguing about something. The argument got more heated as time passed.”
Rose stares at her hands. The next part is said so quietly that I have to lean forward in order to hear her. “The man pulled a gun on my dad. The other men that were in the room weren’t doing anything, so I took a gun from a holster on the man next to me. I… I shot the man my dad was arguing with, before he could shoot my dad.” She looks back up at me. “That was the first man I killed.”
“Rose. I need to know. What happened today? Who were those men?” I stare intently at her as I ask her.
“My father is the leader of a faction that is trying to take over the organization he was working for. He thought that I would be safe out here. A-apparently that isn’t true. I suppose I would be dead right now if not for you.”
I lean back into my pillow. “Wow. Your life could be made into a TV drama.” We both take a moment of silence.
I find myself thinking about what my life would look like as a TV drama, before I notice the reminiscing and thoughtful look in Rose’s eyes.
“So… Does that mean I get a discount if I hire you as a bodyguard?” I ask her.
She looks at me and cracks a small smile.
“I am a little surprised that I told you so much about myself.” Rose leans back into her chair. “I guess you are just easy to talk to.” Rose takes a moment of silence. “Hey, I have been wondering; you fought really well back there. Where did you learn to fight like that?”
I squirm a little in the hospital bed. “Well, since you told me your life story I guess I can tell you… The thing is, I wasn’t exactly the best kid in school, I would get in fights a lot. So after a while my dad got tired of seeing me come home with a split lip and tales of me fighting bullies. So he asked a friend of his to teach me how to fight. Thanks to that teacher, people stopped getting into fights with me. But by then, It had become a habit to visit my dad’s friend for lessons.” I shrug my shoulders.
My little sister peeks into the hospital room with one eye.
I immediately notice her and ask. “What do you need Miss Sunshine?”
“Papa said that he needs to get back to work. He wanted to say goodbye, but they said it was an emergency.” Elizabeth says
After she says that, a doctor enter the room, gently pushing Elizabeth aside. “Good morning Elena, your family told me that you were awake. How are you feeling?”
I look up at him with a smile “I am feeling good doc, all things considered. Tell me, how are you feeling?”
The doctor gives me a small smile, obviously amused by the question, “I am feeling ok, it has been a very long day.” He looks down at the chart at the foot of my bed, “You are a lucky girl you know. You will still have complete control of your arm after this and the bullet didn’t hit anything important.”
“I’ve always been lucky.” I say as I wink at the doctor.
Rose snickers a little bit, her eyes still red from crying.
The doctor picks up my chart and looks it over for a moment, before looking back up at me. “Everything seems to be in order then. You can go home now if you want, just remember to drink lots of fluids.”
“Thanks doc.” I respond as I motion for Rose to help me up. She hurries over and helps me to my feet. I lean on her as my head starts to feel a little woozy. I may be leaning on her a little heavier than I need to, but she doesn’t seem to notice, so I don’t stop.
The doctor watches us with a smile and leads us to my mom and sister, who both leap up out of their chairs as we leave my little room.
“How are you feeling?” Mom asks as we leave the hospital.
“I get the feeling that a lot of people are going to be asking me that question.” I respond.
Elizabeth runs in front of me, before turning around and sticking her tongue out at me “That’s what you get for making us worry.”
I put my head into Rose’s shoulder, “Save me Rose. Elizabeth is making fun of me again.”
She laughs, her earlier sadness almost completely gone.
Rose leaves shortly after we arrive at my house. I climb up the stairs, refusing the offered help from my mom.
On the bed-stand lie the two gloves I had promised to bring with me the night before. I pick them up and put them on, quickly activating their healing power.
I breathe a sigh of relief as the pain in my shoulder disappears.
I lie in my bed for a moment enjoying the comfy sheets before I open my mouth to say “[Status]”
Elena S. Trudeau Age:16 Lvl: 2 Class: Coming soon... Mana: 100 Health: 220 Psi:120
Titles: Beta Tester, Crazy In A Good Way(Is that even possible?), Watched By The Gods, Chosen Of Isis
Special conditions: Most Definitely Not-Normal
Physical Condition: Healthy
Physicality: Athletic 86%
Brilliance: Graduate 97%
I have a sponsor now, does that mean she gives me money? Where is my money? Hmm… maybe I should try-
“[Describe Title Chosen Of Isis]” I say out loud
Isis has decided to sponsor you. Various benefits may pop up.
I love how clear and overly descriptive these messages are, they are never hard to understand, or incredibly irritating, or unclear, or obfuscative, or incredibly irritating. No, they would never be like that.
I sigh as I remember that there is at least one more thing to do.
“[Take from inventory: the prize that I got from the tutorial]” a black sphere appears in front of me floating in the air.
I reach my hand up and pick the ball out of the air.
“Umm. [Identify Black Sphere Thingy?]”
Black Sphere Thingy?, Aka, Humble Abode Owner: Elena S Trudeau
Claim an area as your own to upgrade, change and enhance.
Have I mentioned how much I LOVE how clear these blue screens are?
I look at the black sphere for a moment, Here goes nothing,
Actually, what does that statement even mean? I am in fact doing something, which isn’t nothing. So why am I saying ‘here goes nothing', after all-
I slap my face to get back on track.
“[Activate Humble Abode]” The sphere levitates out of my hand and starts spinning. Suddenly, the sphere explodes into light, going through my house.
An exclamation from both my mother and sister downstairs tells me that they saw the light as well.
You are the Third Beta Tester to unlock your own personal Humble Abode. Due to this, you have been gifted a Game Shop inside your Humble Abode.
You have unlocked the ingame currency! Congratulations! From now on, whenever you defeat a creature, you gain gold usable in all in-game shops!
The shop system is still in the alpha stages for your planet, most features may be inaccessible
You now have these options available for your Humble Abode
Upgrades Add Structure Traps And Defences Decorations
I study the notifications and the blue window now available to me. [Add Structure] is greyed out for some reason. I select it, hoping for some kind of answer.
Your land is not large enough to support extra structures. You can expand your land by
A.Defeating the creatures in charge of other lands
Or B. Buying land in the shop
I close the window and look at the upgrades section. Pictures of various different houses appear on a blue screen, I scroll through it for a moment, watching as the houses become bigger and bigger, from mansions to full-blown castles. Once the houses get to a certain size, they become grayed-out for the same reason that [Add Structure] is. Next to each of the houses was a pricing, which I obviously can’t afford with my grand total of zero gold.
I close the window, disappointed at the fact that I can’t afford any of the upgrades. I search through [Traps And Defences] and [Decorations] as well, but they are both rather self explanatory.
I close all of my notifications, somewhat surprised that I am only the third, out of two million beta testers to get a Humble Abode.
Sitting up out of my bed, my gaze is drawn to a doorway right where my window used to be. The frame of the door was made of black vines, instead of a door sitting in the frame, there was just a black void.
Huh. That didn’t used to be there. Could that be the mysterious “shop” that I got? Who knows! Time to adventure! I leap up out of the bed. Pulling my gloves tighter, I enter the door and watch as the world warps around me, colors flowing into each other as the world rearranges itself. The colors finally returns to normal after a few seconds.
I look around at an empty marketplace. Elevator music plays in the background as I look at a bunch of shops which simply say Closed. My gaze travels down the street until it sees the only shop with an Open sign.
With a skip in my step, I walk towards the only Open shop. Bells ring as the door to the shop opens.
“Hello and welcome to The Information Shop for planet Earth. My name is Taylor, I am from the planet Troi. How can I help you?”
A young woman greets me as I enter the building. Blue eyes and sharp teeth, smile at me as I walk further into the mostly empty store. Long blue hair flows down her back in waves, while her clothes are a rather simple shirt and skirt, her green skin looks lovely as well. Altogether, she looks like a natural hostess.
“Hello Taylor. You said that you were from the planet Troi?” I ask once I reach the counter she is sitting at.
“Yes I did, general information on the planet Troi is available for the low price of five gold.” She answers, her sharp smile never leaving her face.
I frown. “I don’t have any gold to buy anything with right now. Is there some other way for me to get information from you?”
Her smile wanes slightly as I mention my lack of funds. “This is why no one wants to open up shop on new worlds. There is no money to be made.” She sighs, her business smile leaving her as a more natural, yet still polite expression appears on her face, “Normally, I wouldn’t say anything, but since your reaction to me was a lot… calmer than the other two, I will give you a freebee; If you ask the right questions, I can answer them for free.”
I wonder why the other two beta testers weren’t calm, I mean, apart from her green skin and sharp teeth, she does look quite lovely. Maybe the other Beta Testers don’t know how to talk to women? I should ask her, “What were the other two Beta Testers like?”
She looks surprised at my question, “Well, I guess I can answer that. One of them was this big buff dude with a giant sword, he pulled his sword out as soon as he saw me.”
Yep, definitely doesn’t know how to talk to women, you have to wait until you get to know them before you take out your big sword.
“The other one was just rude, kept calling me an NPC and wondering what my code was. He never actually talked to me.”
“Ugh. Every girl has met the kind of guy that just treats you like an object. I feel your pain.” I say with sorrow.
“I know right!” Taylor answers with sincerity. “Guys never learn. As I was saying, that was pretty much my entire interaction with them. Once they realized that it cost gold to get any of my information, they left the shop.”