Chapter 25 – Emergency
Streams of sunlight filtered through a thin layer of clouds as the daylight washed the gray sky into pastel colors. Birds were singing melodious chorus so as to awake their surroundings, the twilight slowly melting away.
It was a beautiful and calm morning of summer.
“It can’t believe it! I won’t tolerate this any longer!”
“Please calm down, My Lady!”
Just kidding. It’s been a long time that we have had a quiet day here. I got used to it. Whether it’s early in the morning or late in the evening, these constant shouting became common. No one is truly paying attention to it anymore –except for the maids, as they don’t have the choice.
Currently, I’m in the courtyard, sitting at small table as I silently take a sip of my tea. It’s a habit I've had for as long as I can remember. Relaxing in the morning around a cup of tea, as you feel the rising sun’s rays gently kissing your skin. There is no better feeling than this. Unfortunately, ever since I settled here, my morning routine has been interrupted and I have to cope with this never-ending commotion every day.
I am not alone, though. Azariah, the female elf who gave birth to the Creator, is keeping me company. It seems that she also appreciates drinking tea, and since it was only the courtyard, it wasn’t so difficult to make her join me. Except for this, she never truly left her room. She doesn’t seem to have any hobbies either. A shame, really. At such a young age, she should take time for herself. She might be an elf, a mortal’s life span is too short not to enjoy the small pleasure of life.
“Why are they still here?! Kick them out already!” A female voice ordered.
Without even bothering to take a look, I could already tell who this voice belonged to: Lady Nora from the Whiteheart household. Well, she might be called Lady Nora, but she is nothing like a lady. Always shouting, complaining and throwing tantrums. In a way, she kind of reminds me of Yoko. Speaking of which, Yoko became much calmer nowadays. Usually, when she finds a new toy to play with, she stops bothering me –not that I'm complaining, I’m not really tempted by the idea of dealing with two wild women at once. So it’s regrettable for this “Lady Nora”, but Yoko has set her eyes on her.
“We can’t, My Lady!” A maid tried to reason with her as her voice betrayed her anxiety. “They’re the young mistress’ guests!”
“Do you think I care about such a futile detail? I’m ordering you to throw them out! Now!”
“But the Lord…! He perfectly stated that we were to do everything to make them feel home until the young mistress returns!”
The spoiled little lady clicked her tongue in annoyance. She was about to add something, but the words never came out as her attention shifted on the manor’s entrance, where a tall figure just appeared: Yoko. Feigning ignorance, Yoko approached with a broad smile on her face. I can tell she’s provoking her.
“Hey bestie~!” She exclaimed.
As she heard her, the Whiteheart lady twitched her eyelids. Obviously, that didn’t bother Yoko –quite the opposite, I’m pretty sure she’s enjoying it- as she continued.
“What’s wrong? Still angry? Come on! I told you I’m sorry, I really didn’t do it on purpose! It was just an unfortunate accident!”
The little lady’s anger did not subside. On the contrary, her body kept trembling in frustration and she wouldn't stop clenching her teeth. Noticing the blood rushing to her mistress’ head, the maid grabbed her arm, immediately turning her attention back to her.
“My Lady…” She didn’t say any further, her eyes were speaking for her; she was begging her not to do anything reckless.
Nora gave her a threatening glare, but although her hands were shaking, the maid did not loosen her grip. Eventually, the little Lady clicked her tongue and with a swift movement of the arm, she forced the maid to let her go, throwing her on the ground at the same time.
“Damn it, Jack…!” She growled to herself as she walked away, ignoring the servant.
She crossed the courtyard, passing by the table where I was relaxing with the Creator’s mother. Usually, she would mutter one or two disparaging remarks. But this time, she simply ignored us. As she left the residence, I noticed the carefree Yoko approaching.
“So, what did you do this time?” I asked with a faint sneer on my face.
“Not much really,” she shrugged, as she let herself fall onto one of the chair. “She is surprisingly more patient than I thought. I was so sure she’d snap this time.”
“Oh? Is she a tough one to deal with?”
An evil grin slowly stretched onto her face.
“Of course not,” Yoko replied. “I know her kind very well. There is no easier target than people like her. It might take a little longer than I expected, but she will break.”
I could tell that she was enjoying the situation. As a Kitsune, one of her favorite things to do, if not her favorite, was to break people. More precisely, it was to destroy their pride.
As time passed, mortals emancipated themselves. Their faith and beliefs decreased drastically, and incidentally, their self-esteem skyrocketed. Deities never meddled in mortals’ affairs. Civil wars, politic wars, even the so called Holy wars, supposedly in Our names… We never got involved in any of them, it was against the Rules –besides, even if it wasn’t for the Rules, I doubt a lot of us care enough to intervene. So in a way, the mortals’ emancipation was a good thing. The problem was this haughtiness of theirs, which they developed over time. Personally, I find it cute. But for some of the others like Yoko, it’s unacceptable. So she particularly enjoys putting them back in their places. The more arrogant the person is the better.
It starts with childish pranks. Harmless, they weren’t meant as an attack to their life, but rather as an attack to their pride. It was her way to tell them that they weren’t worth to be taken seriously. But then, it usually escalated quickly. Once she lost all interest in playing with her targets’ emotions, she completely crushed their soul.
As someone who’s been tormented quite a lot by Yoko, I can’t help but feel a little sorry for the little lady. But, well… We had an agreement. She is all hers, so I can only hope for her that this little game will end before Yoko grows bored of it.
Watching the entrance of the residence, where her toy just left, Yoko flicked her tail back and forth.
“Aren’t you going to follow her?” I asked.
“In the middle of the town? No way,” she grunted. “Too many humans.”
“Is that so.”
Giving a quick glance to Azariah, she had a concerned expression.
“What is it?” I inquired.
A faint smile appeared on her face.
“I think Lady Yoko is a nice person,” she explained.
Hearing her referring to the Goddess of Mischief as nice, I let out a half stifled laugh while Yoko grinned ironically.
“She’s very friendly and easygoing,” Azariah continued. “But I don’t think it’s a good idea to keep acting that way around Lady Nora. She might misunderstand your intentions.”
“Misunderstand?” Yoko repeated. “How so?”
“Well… The Lady is of a very poor character. She is quite easily susceptible and she could think that you’re provoking her.”
Yoko raised an eyebrow in incomprehension, as she looked at the young elf who seemed genuinely worried for her. Then, she chuckled in amusement.
“Oh, sweetie, that is no misunderstand. I am provoking her. And I sincerely hope that this little Lady got the message as well.”
Her eyes squinted, Azariah slightly drew her head backward, clearly confused by Yoko’s answer. She then directed her gaze to me, probably expecting me to say something, but there is really nothing to say.
“Just don’t mind her,” I advised. “She can take care of herself.”
The young elf didn’t seem really convinced. Her face was full of concern. But eventually, her expression softened as her lips curled to form a small smile.
“I see,” she muttered. “You must have great trust in each other not to worry like this.”
I wouldn’t use the word ‘trust’ here. It’s just that you just can’t possibly be concerned about a dragon when its opponent is a squirrel.
“For how long have you two known each other?” She then suddenly asked.
“Since the beginning of times, unfortunately…” Yoko responded first, as she sighed loudly.
“For a very long time,” I corrected.
“Is that so? Did you met in the Church?”
The Church? Oh, right. The golden eyes. Thinking about it, it’s true I’ve hear stories about the Church recruiting blessed children to be raised and indoctrinated with their ideology. I can see why she assumed such a thing. Well, she’s not too far from the truth. Yoko and I definitely didn’t meet at the Church, but the place we met isn’t so different. Recalling about the old times, I grinned.
“You could say that,” I finally answered.
Azariah fell silent as she looked away into the distance, ostensibly pensive. Yoko, who had been observing her for quite a while, grinned in an unpleasant way.
“What is it?” She asked with that annoying know-it-all smile of hers. “You’ve been wanting to ask something for a while, haven’t you? What is it?”
The young elf looked slightly taken aback.
“I was just… surprised that you received the Church’s education,” she answered anyway.
“Well, didn’t you?” I inquired.
“No, someone like me couldn’t possibly have…”
Why not? She is a chosen one after all. A real one.
“What’s so special about the Church anyway?” Yoko wondered, her eyes squinted. “It’s just a bunch of arrogant mortals who one day randomly declared themselves as Gods’ messengers.”
“You don’t seem to hold the Church in high regard,” Azariah noted, with a faint smile. “That’s surprising.”
“Some people just don’t know their place anymore. You wouldn’t like it either if you were in our position.”
“So what about the Church’s education?” I changed the subject, returning to the main topic.
Azariah turned her attention back on me.
“It’s just that… Since it’s a religious education, I thought it would strongly emphasize on theism,” she explained.
“Well… It would, wouldn’t it?”
The elf stayed silent for a few second, as she kept fidgeting with her hands. Then, she looked up at us.
“Do you know a lot about deities?” She asked, a little hesitant.
Uho… I see. So this is what it is about. We are stepping on dangerous grounds, we probably should stop here. But as I was thinking this, I noticed Yoko’s grin growing larger.
“We certainly do, don’t we Harri?” She answered while giving me a meaningful look. Then, she directed her gaze to Azariah. “What is it that you want to know?”
Yoko… What are you trying to do?
“I’m just trying to understand,” Azariah replied. “What makes me… No. What makes us special.”
Yoko and I squinted at her answer. Seeing our confused expression, the elf smiled weakly before continuing.
“My daughter, my son and I… I’m trying to understand why we were blessed.”
Huh? That’s it?
“That’s it?” Yoko demanded raising a single eyebrow, as she apparently thought the same thing.
“Yes, well… It’s something I’ve been wondering for years. Is it strange?”
No. I guess it’s a given. Chosen ones would want to know this kind of things. However…
“No reasons,” Yoko stated with a dejected expression, seemingly disappointed. “I hate to destroy your ego, but there probably weren’t any reasons at all behind your blessings. You weren’t blessed because you were special, you are special because you were blessed.”
She is right. There can be many reasons why an Original would choose to bless a mortal. However, most of the time, there isn’t any reason at all. Why do we bless them? Because we can, it’s just as simple as this.
To begin with, chosen ones aren’t as special as mortals tend to think. They were newborns among others after all. And if all newborns share one thing in common, it’s their undetermined future. Contrary to general beliefs, there isn’t such a thing as destiny. A child’s future is completely blank. Environment, upbringing… There are a lot of factors that can determine one’s future. Mortals tend to think some are just born to do greater things, but that is wrong. Some are simply raised to do greater things. In the end, even if some are starting off life more advantaged than others, mortals all have the same potential as individuals. Chosen ones are no exceptions. They weren’t “chosen” because they were meant to accomplish wonders; they are simply more likely to accomplish wonders because they were “chosen”. As for why they were “chosen” instead of another, this was just a matter of pure luck.
However, the young elf didn’t seem satisfied by Yoko’s blunt answer.
“No reasons? But I…”
Yoko sighed heavily.
“Look, if you don’t believe me, and if you want a reason so bad, why don’t you ask her directly?”
Hearing the name of the Goddess of Light, Azariah flinched in surprise and widened her eyes.
“There is absolutely no way that someone like me could ask Her anything…”
“Don’t worry and just ask her. She’ll tell you why she blessed you. Although it was probably just on a whim…”
Azariah chuckled a bit. “I wish I could, really. It would be a great honor to meet her, let alone speak to her…”
“Wait, what?” Yoko suddenly interrupted her. “You’ve never met her before?”
“Of course not,” the young elf responded as if it was obvious.
Hearing her answer, Yoko and I exchanged a brief gaze. We both thought of the same thing.
“Pardon me,” I spoke up. “As this is a religious kingdom worshiping Naia, we automatically assumed she would be the one who blessed you so we didn’t ask but… Is she? Is she the one who blessed you?”
Azariah slightly tilted her head to the side. “Well, who else?”
Who else, indeed. However, it’s definitely not Naia. Naia always comes in contact with her Chosen ones. Had she been the one who blessed her, she would have reached her at some point. But then, who? This land is religious, its people definitely aren’t neutral. Who would care to bless someone else’s worshiper?
“You’re not from here, are you?” Yoko abruptly asked. “I should have thought about it, but this is a human kingdom. You probably weren’t born here.”
“No, I wasn’t.” The young elf replied with a hint of nostalgia in her eyes.
“Then Naia is not the one who blessed you,” Yoko explained. “You most likely were blessed by the God of your birth place.”
“That’s probably not the case.”
“And why is that?”
“Because I was already here when I was blessed.”
Yoko furrowed her brows hearing this.
“Didn’t you say you weren’t born here?”
“I did, and I wasn’t. But I didn’t receive my blessings as an infant. It happened only recently.”
Hearing her nonsense statement, Yoko and I both froze in surprise. My eyes wide open, I carefully studied her expression trying to spot any subtle cues that could reveal a lie, while Yoko drew her head backward, looking utterly perplexed. The young elf didn’t seem to be lying. Instead, she was simply smiling, as if expecting our reactions.
“Hold on a second,” Yoko said raising her hand up, as she recovered from the shock. “What are you talking about?”
“Did Lynett not tell you about it?” Azariah asked, seemingly amused.
No, she didn’t. She never mentioned anything like that. Did she think that it was something trivial?
Yoko broke into nervous laughter.
“There seem to be some kind of misunderstand. That is very unlikely to happen.”
“But it did happen.”
“No, no, no, I can assure you. That is not possible.” Yoko declared, emphasizing each word. She marked a pause before turning to me. “Right…?”
An eyebrow lifted in a quizzical expression, I could tell that the young elf’s unwavering stance managed to raise doubt her mind. However, Yoko is right.
“No, it isn’t possible,” I seconded.
There is a reason why only newborns were blessed until now. It’s because only newborns can be blessed. Or to be more specific, unborn mortals. It’s not that we won’t give our blessings to adults. It’s simply that we can’t. Giving or receiving blessings is a complex, multiform phenomenon that can result in drastic changes. Appearance, affinities, life-span, natural predispositions… It is something that often transcends and modifies an individual’s core parameters, which is why only unborn children can be “chosen”. Because once an individual is born, anything that defines them can no longer be changed. Neither by me, by Yoko, nor even by Naia.
Azariah lowered her eyes, seemingly disappointed.
She sighed. “So even the Church doesn’t know…”
“Don’t be so defeated,” I tried to cheer her up. “There must be some kind of explanation.”
“What explanation? Like some kind of super deity?” Yoko sneered as she let herself sink into her chair.
But her mocking smile vanished soon enough, realizing that there might be more truth than fancy in her half-assed joke. We exchanged a silent, but meaningful eye-contact, as we both came to the same realization.
A super deity…? Thinking about it, she is her mother, right? And even if it’s true that no one should be able to bless an adult, if there was someone capable of doing that, wouldn’t that be her? Moreover, she did mention once that she gave blessings before. Oh, that fool… She didn’t dare, did she? Did she actually bless her own mother?
“When you say you were blessed only recently, when was it exactly?”
“It was twelve years ago, I believe,” the young elf responded after hesitating a bit.
Twelve years ago… She returned fourteen years ago. That timing is way too convenient. This can’t be a coincidence. That fool really did it. She blessed her own mother.
“That fucking idiot…!” Yoko grunted, as she probably came to the same conclusion as me.
“Is something wrong?” Azariah asked, seemingly confused by her sudden outburst.
Yoko let out a loud sigh as she brought a palm to her face.
“Naia is not going to be happy about this…”
Yoko is absolutely right. Naia might be the Goddess of Light, she is also the Goddess of Order, something that mortals tend to forget. She is a stickler for rules and doesn’t like abnormalities. And as stubborn as she is, she can be a pain in the neck.
Blessing her own mother wasn’t a smart move... I hope the Creator knows what she’s doing.
“Let me in!!”
An abrupt yell came out of nowhere. It was high-pitched, likely a child. The sudden commotion attracted a lot of attention. A couple of servants came out of the mansion, rushing towards the entrance of the residence.
“What is it, this time?” Yoko complained.
“Please, don’t worry about it.” A maid responded as she re-filled our now empty cups of tea with the same usual professionalism. “It’s just a beggar. Nothing you need concern yourself about.”
A beggar? I’m pretty sure I heard the voice of a child.
Directing my eyes towards the gate, there was indeed a child. Surrounded by some guards and a couple of servants blocking his way, he was seemingly trying to get inside the residence.
“Let me pass, you idiots!”
“This little brat! Stay still for a second! Do you even have any idea where you are?!” A guard groaned as he tried to immobilize the child, but the boy did not listen. Instead, he kept struggling, wiggling his way out of his grasp. But each time he tried to force his way inside the residence, he was blocked by a wall of servants. The scene went on for some few minutes.
“That’s enough!” The head house-maid eventually lost patience. “What do you think you’re being paid for? Get rid of him this instant! Make his head fly, for all I care! This is the private property of the Marquis of Eskor! This is no place for a beggar!”
The guard ground his teeth as he glared at the head maid. I could tell his pride was wounded, being yelled at by a woman. But the house maid did not flinch. Instead, she shot him back his glare. The guard clicked his tongue before directing his frustration back on the boy.
“Out of my sight!” He grabbed the boy by his collar and violently tossed him on the ground, before drawing his sword. His job at stake and his pride wounded, he lost his temper. He was no longer treating the child as a child, but as a mere intruder. “Another step and you’ll be considered a trespasser! As a guard of the House and according to the law, I’ll execute you on spot!”
“Such a cruel way to treat a child…” I heard the young elf at my side mutter, as she watched the scene full of concern.
However, the boy was not intimidated. He immediately got back on his feet as he wiped the dust on his face, before provoking the guard even further by sticking his tongue out.
“Dumbass!! Let me in! If you don’t, you’re the one who’s going to get executed!” He threatened in his turn. “I know the lord and I know his family!”
The guard’s face turned crimson red. “You little…. How dare you utter such an obvious lie! Do you truly wish to die?!”
“That’s not a lie! They’re my friend! I even drank tea with them!”
His veins popped out, the guard raised his sword in a menacing stance. “Since you keep blabbing lies, I hope you’re prepared for the consequences!”
However, before he could drop the blade on the boy, a loud voice interrupted him.
“SHUT THE FUCK UP!”
The guard turned around in surprise, and everyone else imitated him.
“You’re giving me a headache!” Yoko hissed, as she slammed the table, spilling the tea at the same time.
The head maid approached calmly before ordering one of a subordinate to clean the table and bring a new set of tea.
“I apologize for the inconvenience,” she said with her head down. “We will deal with this immediately.”
Then, she gave a meaningful look to the guard, who flinched as he met her eyes.
“For fuck’s sake, humans are so loud…” Yoko continued to grumble.
As I took a look at the guard who was about to comply with his silent order, I noticed the boy looking in our direction with round eyes. He blinked a couple of times, and then suddenly, startling everyone, he let out a yelp of surprise.
“AAAAAAH!” He exclaimed, his finger pointing at us. “I know them!”
Taking advantage of the confusion, the boy managed to force his way inside the residence, as he rushed to our side.
“What are you doing?! Why are you letting him in?!” The head maid shouted, as the servants exchanged confused looks.
“Uh, well, he said he knows the guests,” one of them responded.
“That’s obviously a lie!”
“It’s not a lie!” The boy immediately retorted as he hid behind Yoko. “I do know them! Right?”
Unfortunately for him, the Goddess of Lust and Mischief had absolutely no intention of siding with him.
“Who the fuck are you?” She simply asked, with a disinterested voice.
Upon hearing her answer, the boy flinched as his whole body became tense. Her words were putting him in a bad situation and he knew it.
“Little shit…! It really was a lie after all!” The guard immediately came to grab the child who was now starting to panic.
“W- W- Wait! No, no, no, it’s not a lie!” The boy turned in Yoko’s direction one more time. “Miss! Miss! It’s me! Don’t you recognize me?!”
“Never seen you in my life before,” she responded with a yawn.
A sadistic smile drew on the guard’s face as he started dragging the child. The boy struggled to break free but without success. He then turned his gaze on me.
“MISTER! Tell them!”
What? Me too?
“It’s me, it’s me!” He yelled with a frantic voice. “I’m Axis! Have you already forgotten?!”
Axis? Am I supposed to remember someone with that name? I’ve met so many people and I’ve seen so many faces in this one life time that I’ve long stopped remembering the irrelevant ones. Taking a good look at the boy, his clothes were ripped and dirty, and his unmatched shoes were completely worn out, making him look like a beggar. However, his face did seem familiar. Still, I couldn’t remember him. He didn’t have any particular traits and his face was the kind of common face you’d see anywhere in the street.
“It’s me, it’s me!” The boy cried out.
“That’s enough!” The guard shouted. “Your lies aren’t fooling anyone anymore, you’re dead meat!”
“It’s me! Axis!” He kept yelling anyway. “We met a few weeks ago! With big sister Lynett!”
At that moment, the guard froze and the servants started exchanging whispers.
“What are you stopping for? Throw him out!” The head maid ordered.
“Umh… He just said the young mistress’ name,” one of the servant pointed out.
“So what? It’s just a name!”
“But the young mistress isn’t publicly known. If he knows her name, he might be telling the truth.”
“I am!” The boy spoke out. “I told you I knew the lord and his family!”
As the servants were discussing, unsure what to do, I finally remembered. If the boy says we met a couple weeks ago with Lynett, it significantly reduces the circumstances to only one possibility. The day we met the Creator. Thinking about it, there was indeed a mortal and his son, back then.
“We know him,” I spoke out.
“Huh? We do?” Yoko asked, raising an eyebrow.
“Remember that human who used to follow you around like a puppy? That’s his son.”
“Oh, right. Now that you mention it…”
The guard, unconvinced, looked down on the boy who was now full of confidence again. When the boy arrogantly smiled at him with his “I told you so” expression, he clicked his tongue and shifted his attention to the head maid. However, she silently shook her head. The guard unwillingly let the boy go before everyone returned to their activities.
“Humpff! I told them I knew the Lord’s family. I’m going to tell big sister and they’re all going to lose their jobs! Serves them right!” Axis muttered in a barely audible voice.
“So, what are you doing here?” I asked. “Does your father know you’re here?”
“My fath- AAAH! Right!” He exclaimed. “Where’s big sister? I need to talk to her!”
“If you’re referring to Lynett, she’s not here, so you can go home,” Yoko said with an annoyed tone.
“I can wait!” Axis insisted. “When is she coming back?”
“In a couple of months.”
“She left a few weeks ago,” I explained. “She won’t come back until the 12th moon.”
“The twelfth… That’s in five months!”
“That’s why I’m telling you to go home, kid,” Yoko sighed.
“No, I can’t! I really need to talk to her! Now! It’s an emergency!”
“Well, that’s a problem.”
Axis fell silent for a moment. Then, he looked up at us, his eyes full of expectations.
“Then you do it! You can help me instead!” He suggested with enthusiasm.
“No,” Yoko flat out rejected him.
“What? Why? You don’t even know what I’m about to ask!”
“And I don’t want to know,” she replied. “Whatever you want, it’s not my problem. Deal with it yourself.”
“That’s so selfish! You can’t do that!” The boy complained.
“Oh, trust me, I can.” Yoko replied with a much serious tone. “What makes you think I should help you in the first place? Your kind has always been like this. Weak and useless. Unable to do anything by themselves. Always praying for a miracle and waiting for help. So you do that. Beg for help. But don’t think for a second that we should help.”
Yoko’s harsh word hit him hard. Although he was young, he perfectly understood the meaning of her words. He couldn’t find anything to say. He then directed his gaze on me. Despite not voicing it, I could tell he was now expecting me to help.
“My apologizes,” I said with a smile. “I can’t.”
Meddling in mortals’ affairs is out of question. That goes against the very first Rule. Besides, we have our own mission. We need to stay here and watch over the Creator’s mother.
Axis lowered his head.
“But… I really need help. It’s urgent…!” He muttered through clenched teeth, tears forming in his eyes.
As the boy started sobbing, Azariah silently approached him before crouching down to his level and putting a hand on his shoulder.
“Are you Lynett’s friend?” She asked with a gentle smile.
Axis looked up at her. “Who…?”
“I’m her mother,” she introduced herself.
“Her mother?” The boy repeated. “You’re also a chosen one?”
Azariah patted the child on the head as she started comforting him, just like a mother would.
“I’m not sure what the matter is, but you shouldn’t cry like that or your parents will be sad,” She spoke with a soft voice.
The boy nodded and wiped his tears away, his cheek a little flushed. He let the elf spoil him for a few minutes when his eyes suddenly glimmered with renewed hope.
“You help me!” He then declared. “Any chosen one will do, so you help me!”
The young elf, taken aback, silently looked at the boy who was watching her with a childlike expression. I can already tell she won’t be able to refuse such beaming eyes.
“Uh, I can try,” she accepted with an indecisive smile.
His eyes alight, Axis screamed with delight as he started pouncing and bouncing with a huge grin. His good mood was so intoxicating that Azariah and even a couple of servants began chuckling at his sight.
“Well, shit.” Yoko blurted out.
Yeah, this is not good.