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The Colony, City Hall

Kaga stepped down from the red bus and looked around in wonder. Stone buildings towered all over the huge plaza, with the lone fountain in the middle, large enough for have more than a thousand people to gather.

"People from Group 9! Please gather here!" A girl voice could be heard calling over the gawks and voices of awe in the crowd.

Kaga turned and saw a girl dressed in a long-sleeved white blouse with a red ribbon underneath a dark blue vest and blue skirt with blue side hat on her ginger head tied in a short ponytail. She waved a small triangular red flag on a stick, calling for people from Group 9 in Common Tongue. Kaga remembered she and the people in the same bus were from Group 9 and she walked up to join the group gathering before her.

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Billye of Tinstreet Orphanage from Falledge also known as Billy the Kid stood on a couple flights of steps bearing a wide smile that started to make her jaw cramp. She waved a little red flag and called out again in Common, "Please gather here people from Group 9! Please..."

Finally, some people finished gawking around started to gather before her, she had to stand on the steps to be able to look over their heads at the small crowd. "I need to count the number of people before I bring you in! Please stay together and do not wander off!"

Billy sighed inwardly as half of the people were either ignoring her or just too awed by their surroundings. She resisted the urge to scratch her stockings as her legs itched and the unaccustomed new uniform she was wearing. So far she started this job as an administrative assistant for almost 2 5-days weeks while studying Eng-ish lessons during the evening. Luckily her seniors here were kind and helpful to her, but she was just not used to being feminine again after fighting for scraps so long in the gutters.

"People! Please line up..." She called out, again and again, her temper starting to rise.

"HEY!" Billy couldn't stand it anymore, a vein popped in her head. "GROUP 9! Please line up properly!" She yelled loudly at the crowd who looked shocked at the little girl shouting at them before they obediently lined up before her. "I need to count heads! Can't you all listen to instructions!"

The group of people blushed in embarrassment as passersby giggled and laughed at the scene of a little girl holding a tiny flag and scolding a bunch of grown-ups.

"Billye!" Another girl dressed in the same manner panted as she ran down the steps, "Sorry, there was a meeting that dragged on longer than expected! I..." The girl paused as she saw the group of chastened looking newcomers all obediently lined up. "You managed to control... the crowd all by your self?"

"Roxy..." Billy's face turned sheepish, "Tee hee... I just accidentally raised my voice a bit..."

"Hahaha," Roxy laughed and patted Billy's head, "Well, good work! Let's get them in processed then!"

"Okay, I counted, everyone is here!" Billy smiled, quite liked the feeling of warmth from Roxy. "Group 9 follow us and PLEASE! Do not wander off!" She gave a glare for good measure to the group and together with Roxy at the rear, led the whole group of newcomers up the stairs and into City Hall.

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Kaga gave a small smile as she suddenly recalled why the little girl looked so familiar, it was the wounded child she helped carried during their run in the forest! She must have recovered and is now working here. Maybe she should find some time to catch up with her later.

Passing by the massive round stone columns, they entered the massive double wooden doors of the City Hall and saw a large bustling hall, with several doors that led somewhere. A row of counters with the same blue uniforms the two guides were wearing sat behind the tables and were serving people seated on chairs.

A large strange magical board hung over the counters will periodically change runes with a chime, and someone seated on the rows of chairs laid out on one side of the hall will then walk up to an empty counter. Kaga was then given a square chit, with some strange runes drawn on it, and looked up as Billy explained.

"This is a queue number! Each of you is given one!" Billy turned and pointed to the huge magical board hung above the counters. "When your turns come, a matching number will be soon on that board, as long as your queue number matches with that, head towards the correct counter!"

"If you do not understand the numbers or runes, just match them!" Billy continued to explain, "On each counter has a number too! The board will show you which counter to go to! Remember, just match your queue number with the board, and match the counter number shown and head to that counter. You can seat there while waiting for your number to be called!" Billy pointed to the rows of chairs on the side.

"If there is anything you are not sure of, please feel free to ask!" Billy said and was almost immediately bombarded with questions and she almost instantly regretted.

"What magic is this?"
"What are we doing here?"
"Where's the toilet?"
"I'm hungry!"
"Where do we sleep?"
"..."

Kaga found an unoccupied chair and sat down, observing each and everything in the hall. Suddenly she saw a group of short-eared people, and she tensed up slightly, remembering the two strange short-ears that appeared at the camp and tried to capture her soul! But she slowly relaxed again as the short-ears did not appear to be after her and the people around them, making her question if the rumors of demons are true.

She watched the short-ears carefully, observing their every movement and manners, feeling like they were very similar to the long ears, making her fluffy ears twitch. Who built all these? Could it be the demons? If so, they must possess very powerful elemental magic to raise stone walls and buildings!

Time passed unnoticed as Kaga was concentrated on observing her surroundings, seeing new things and wonders while the board chimed, and Kage saw the exact same runes with her 'queue number' and another rune next to it.

She quickly recognized the rune to one of the counters bearing the same rune and she walked up nervously and stood before a cheerful looking middle aged lady. "Oh my, a beast man! Take a seat, dear." She spoke in Common.

Kaga gingerly sat down, her tail and ears erect as she nervously stared at the uniformed lady. "Don't be nervous, you are here to fill in some information and we will assign you a place and offer you jobs and education courses."

"There will also be an orientation for you to attend, so you get to know the City better." The matronly lady smiled, putting Kaga feel slightly at ease.

"Now, please put your hand here, on this Truth Stone," The matronly lady said, "What is your name, dear?"

"Ka-Kaga Whitetail..." She replied as she stared at the stone with her right hand on it. The stone gave off a warm feeling and glowed slightly, while the lady nodded as she appeared to use her fingers to press on something rapidly on the table, giving off tapping sounds.

"Age? Hmm... 19 you say? Where were you born? Parents? Siblings? Previous occupation?" The questions continued coming. "As in what did you work as before?"

"Eh... I was... the Guardian Priestess of the City of Beast..." Kaga truly spoke out, knowing that she couldn't lie with a Truth Stone in her hand.

"Oh my, you are the Guardian Priestess?" The matronly lady eyes widen and she rubbed her forehead, "This is above my pay grade... Please on hold..."

The administrative lady got up and walked to a table at the back, and picked up a strange looking handle that has some curly strings linked to it and seemed to press on the surface of the strange object.

Kaga's eyes widened and her ears and tail stood straight up as her heightened hearing clearly hear the lady speaking to someone on it! What demonic sorcery is that! She couldn't understand what she was talking about as they seemed to be speaking in another language that she recognized it to be like what the people were saying that they need to learn.

Less then a turn of the glass, the lady returned and smiled, "So sorry, dear, to keep you waiting, but I informed the higher-ups about your situation and they will be here to talk to you, but let's continue registering you first into the system!"

Kaga looked suspiciously at her, and wonder should she make a run for it. "Hehehe, dear girl, don't be so nervous, now, what skills do you have? Magic? Combat? Knowledge?"

"I am skilled in the use of Spirit Magic, I should be considered a 6th Circle Mage by your standards." Kaga replied, "I am also well versed in divination and protection formations." She also listed out several fields of thought she had studied.

"Wow, a 6th Circle Mage at your age?" The lady was clearly impressed, "Good, good, we need more people of your caliber!" She appeared to rap on the table rapidly, producing more of those tapping sounds as she looked to the side at something, driving the level of curiosity of Kaga higher and higher, making her ears twitch madly.

"Erm... If you d-don't mind..." Kaga couldn't stand not knowing what the lady was doing, "What are you doing tapping on the table?"

"Oh? Hahaha," The lady laughed and gestured Kaga to lean over the counter. "You are a curious one ain't you?" She showed Kaga a piece of a flat black rectangular object with tiny squares laid out in rows on the surface with runes drawn on each square.

"This is a 'keyboard', we press the keys to type in the words we want into the 'corn-pu-er'," She explained as she showed Kaga a glowing display screen on the side filled with more strange runes. She held a strange black oval object and clicking sounds could be heard and Kaga saw something glowing on the screen and the lady demonstrated by tapping on the 'key-bore' and runes appeared like magic on the screen.

Kaga ears and tail twitched madly as she looked at the way the 'corn-pu-er' worked and resisted the urged to ask more. The lady laughed at her expression and kindly said, "Don't worry, you will learn more when you start attending classes."

"Now look here," The lady pointed to a boxy object with a round shiny circle in the middle. "Smile!"

Kaga gave an awkward smile, looking directly at the strange object, wondering what is it when suddenly she remembered seeing something very very similar to it. But it was smaller compared to what those two weird short-ears were holding... But could it be the same? It can capture your soul?

A click sounded and the lady giggled, "My dear, you looked so stiff! Now I need your fingerprint and a drop of your blood into the Truth Stone and we will be mostly done!"

"What is that thing?" Kaga asked pointing to the camera. "Does it capture your soul?"

"Hahaha, where did you hear that from, my dear?" The lady giggled again, "You are so cute!"

Kaga blushed as it was the first time someone called her cute, "But.. but..."

"Hehehe, don't worry, it just takes a photo of you," The lady smiled and took her hand gently, and pressed it against a piece of silvery-looking pad. "Don't move your finger yet. Ok, the other fingers..."

Next, she took one of Kaga's finger and placed before the Truth Stone and there was a tiny prick of pain and a drop of blood landed on the surface of the Stone, making it glow. "Ow, what did you do?"

"I need a drop of your blood to register with the Truth Stone," The lady replied. There was a strange whining noise and the lady smiled, "And we are done!"

She handed over a small stack of papers and a small rectangular card, "Here are some brochures for you to read on, and this is your Identity Card! Don't lose this! There is a fine if you do!"

Kaga looked down at the card and gasped in shock as a perfect looking image of herself was posted on it!

"MY SOUL!"

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A note from neo Koh

Advance chapters are available on Patreon (18 Chapters Ahead)

 

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damn... my BP was ard 138/96 and heart rate at 100... after meds it stayed the ard the same but my heart rate dropped to 68 ... wtf!


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