B1 — 19. Two Days; Meeting

Walking onto the beach, Sora observed several couples as they brimmed with emotion.  Why don’t I have that?  What do I need to do? I’m okay with friendship; it doesn’t have to be love.

She rubbed her left shoulder.  Will Wendy forgive me … can we still be friends?

Sitting down on the sand, she noticed her footprints were lighter than she remembered.  So many strange things are happening that are cool, but it’s like a wall’s building around me at the same time.

Sora looked up at the moon with longing eyes.  How cliché … I’m comparing myself with the moon.  She has the stars, though, hmm; I guess technically, she does feel the heat of the sun.

Sniffing, she kicked at the sand.  Stupid analogy…

Closing her eyes, she listened to the waves crash against the shore, sending a symphony of music to her keen ears.  The cool ocean breeze carried its salty smell to her nose, mixed with millions of recognizable scents.

Her eyes opened as a slight shift in the air made her tense.  Should I go meet Eyia?  She seems at least as strong as Jin by how they talk, and I kind of feel like Jin isn’t scared of anything.

She gulped.  Looking to her right, she took a deep intake of air.  Vision centering on a sandhill, she focused her hearing; the sounds of displaced sand being kicked up at uneven intervals, slow breathing, and an even heartbeat fed back to her.

She doesn’t seem agitated, more serene.

Rising, she walked up the dune to see Eyia sitting against a washed-up log.  The tide was quickly rising to the spot she sat.  She was wearing the same dress that she’d given her several days back, but it seemed washed.

Slowly kneeling, Sora pursed her lips and stared at Eyia for several minutes as she looked out at the ocean with a passive expression.  Where’s Jin?  I don’t smell her anywhere nearby.

She took a deep breath.  Now or never.

Sora straightened and walked over to Eyia.

Fifteen feet from the girl, Eyia’s head turned; she didn’t look surprised to see her with the welcoming smile on her lips.  “Sora, do you like to sit by the ocean too?”

Smiling back, Sora nodded.  “Occasionally, but usually, I watch it from my balcony.  It seems your speech has improved since I last saw you.”

Eyia grimaced.  “Yes, but Jin’s lessons have been—lacking as of late.  I have not found her for all of yesterday.”

Sitting down next to her, Sora said, “I think you mean I haven’t seen Jin for two days.”

“Ah—thanks,”  Eyia said with a light laugh.  “You’ve wrapped yourself in … mirages,” Eyia commented, looking for the right word.

“Oh—you can see through my illusions.  I guess you really aren’t human then … a lot has changed over the past several days.”  Sora noted with a small expulsion of air.

Eyia nodded.  “Yes—since you have appeared, Jin is seeming abnormal.  Jin is—mumbling about Sora and … unusual powers.  She is talking about you lots.  You also has a tail and ears,” she noted, trying to get the words out properly.  “You did not have those when we met first.”

Sora’s brow furrowed.  “So, Jin’s been acting abnormal and has been mumbling about my abilities.  Do my unusual abilities interest her that much?”

Eyia frowned as she analyzed Sora’s questions.  “I don’t know why.  Jin just mumbles and been going by herself lots.  She is searching for stuff, and she finds stuff—gangsters stuff gives her.”

Scratching the back of her head, Sora hummed lowly.  “She’s been getting things from gangsters, and she’s been looking around for information … She’s an odd one.  I guess I’ll see her sometime soon.”

Questions now floated around her brain.  “You don’t have to answer if you don’t want to, but what kind of creature are you, Eyia?  You didn’t seem to like Kari, and she’s a Fenris Wolf…”

Sora cut off as Eyia’s eyes started to glow a crystalline blue, and an intense frosty atmosphere filmed from her body in light tendrils of fog.  She started speaking Asgardian with a sharp tone but calmed down as Sora nimbly leaped away and stared at her uncertainly.

“I am—apologize,” Eyia said with a disgruntled tone.  “No—I do not like—Fenris Wolves.”  Her voice told Sora she more than disliked Fenris Wolves; her words breathed enmity.

Staying where she was, Sora tentatively asked, “Why not?”

Huffing in disgust, Eyia reverted to Asgardian before a hitch caught in her throat.  “I keep—forgetting—you do not speak my language.”

Sora chuckled nervously.  “Nope, I do not speak Asgardian…” she trailed off as Eyia glared into the distance with such a chilling gaze that she thought it would freeze the ocean.

“Jin says, hmm,  I should … not explain…”  Eyia stated.  Well—she doesn’t need to tell me what she is to make me a little scared.

“I see,” Sora said with a slight frown and a shiver.  “That’s okay if you don’t want to tell me.”

Eyia’s blue irises shifted to drill into Sora’s.  “You battle Fenris Wolf?”

Shifting uncomfortably, Sora nodded.  I didn’t expect Eyia to be this intense about it.  Are Fenris Wolves really that hated by her people?

Eyia scowled and looked puzzled.  “Sora cannot victorious Fenris Wolf.  How are you life?  Is this reason for Jin’s interest?”

Troubled at the response, Sora hummed.  “No—I think you’re right, Eyia.  I hurt my hand just trying to punch her.”  Eyia looked even more confused as she stared up at Sora, struggling to get the words out.  “I didn’t really—beat her—beat a Fenris Wolf,” Sora admitted, “I just tricked her into—hurting her friend.”

Understanding dawned on Eyia’s face.  “I understand!  Smart tactic—keep you life,” Eyia commended with a brimming smile.

She must really not like Fenris Wolves.  Also, why can I not feel the cold until I’m around Eyia?  She makes me shiver like I’m naked in the middle of a blizzard!  I guess it’s one of her powers.

Smiling back and feeling the cold vibes leave, Sora grinned.  “Want to see something cool?”  Eyia nodded, looking a bit uncertain about what she was trying to say.

Sora flicked her tail; beams of red, yellow, and orange lights danced across the water, shooting into the foaming liquid and across the open space.

Eyia’s face lit up with wonder as she watched the lights twist and turn at Sora’s command.  The light show continued for a few minutes before she sat back down beside Eyia.

Nodding with a grin, Eyia said, “One reason for Jin’s interest.  Abnormal powers.  She—say you cannot do those with one tail and—race?”

Sora thought back on what Aiden said.  “Yeah, I think I heard something about that.  Someone said I shouldn’t be able to bend light because it’s not a natural Nogitsune thing—it’s a Húli Jīng thing.”  She smiled at Eyia’s emphatic nod.  “So, even Jin thinks I’m odd—I’m odd for a monster.”

“Yes,” Eyia said with a bright grin as she began waving her hands at the sky, “but it’s pretty!  Like walking in city or North lights, but lights bend around air.  It’s—cool?”  she posed the last word as a question, testing it on her tongue.

Laughing, Sora nodded.  “Yeah, I think it’s cool and pretty too.  Do you know anything about Foxes and Fox Magic?”  Sora questioned hopefully.

Eyia shook her head.  “Never seen fox like you.  Jin has lots of knowledge; she tells stories.”

A nervous chuckle shook Sora’s chest.   “No—not yet, despite being so small, she scares me a little.”  

Eyia nodded with bunched lips.  “Yes, she first wants to rip heart out of you—but I say she does not have white hair—Jin agreed.”

Sora swallowed hard at Eyia’s words.  Jin really was going to rip my heart out!  White hair means Inari, right?

“Yeah—after hearing that—I’d rather stay away from her.  Do you, by chance, know why Jin hates Inari’s followers?”  Sora carefully asked.

Eyia shook her head.  “Cannot speak in your tongue, but mine.”  She spoke in Asgardian for a moment before Sora put her hand up.

“Sorry, Eyia.  I wish I understood Asgardian.”

“Understand.”  Eyia frowned.  “Jin young, though.  She not know all things—maybe she like Inari one day.”  She seemed to be thinking for the right words and gave up, drawing a number in the sand.  “Jin wrote this to teach me.”

Sora pressed her tongue against her lower lip as she noted the number.  “Ah—ninety-nine-years-old is she.”

Jin just called her young—how old does that make her?  Forget friends my age!  Who knows with monsters…

Sora sighed.  “Thanks for the help, Eyia.  Do … you have a place to stay?”

Eyia frowned.  “Here?”  she asked.

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Sora shook her head.  “No, umm, home?  Sleeping place, rest, uh, cottage, maybe?  Shack, or, wait, bed?”

Sora continued till Eyia’s face lit up.  Nodding frantically, Eyia said, “Yes, bed—Eyia have with Jin—Jin found beach bed—she did not come back … yesterday?”  she posed it as a question, and Sora nodded.

They’re sleeping in a beach shack … I don’t recall any beach shacks on this beach.  Maybe she made one—she’s pretty old, she probably knows how.

“Alright, I just wanted to make sure,” Sora said with a smile.  “Just so you know, you can always stay at my place—it’s an open offer.”

Eyia nodded warmly.  “It appreciated.  Jin not like favors—comfortable.”

“It is appreciated, and Jin doesn’t like favors. It makes her uncomfortable,” Sora corrected with a wink.

“Oh—thank you, Sora.  It is appreciated.”  Eyia nodded with triumph.

Rising, Sora said, “It’s getting late, and I need to look up a few things.  So, thanks for the chat, Eyia, and I hope we meet again.”

“Salu—goodbye,” she corrected herself with a furrowed brow.

Chuckling, Sora nodded and walked back to her hotel.  I wish the internet could help me understand Asgardian.  Maybe it can give me some clues … It’s been somewhat vague about most everything, but I am searching myths as if they were true.

She stopped as another familiar scent crossed her path.  Aiden again?  He passed by this block today and not long ago.  Does he live in the area?

Bending down, she sniffed again.  “Not an hour has passed,” she whispered.  Suddenly a frown creased her lips.  “How do I even know these things?  Have I turned into a bloodhound?”  she asked in despair.

Well—at least I’m a cute bloodhound!

Sighing, she got to her feet and shifted her bag to a more comfortable position.  “What does it matter?  I also smell Nelly’s scent, but that’s two days old … I didn’t ask her why she was in my penthouse!”

Folding down her left ear, she huffed in exasperation.  What’s happened to my mind lately?

Taking another deep breath, she exhaled, mumbling, “Maybe it’s because they have such odd odors that I can pick it up so easily.  My abilities are strengthening further still, and my personality keeps shifting.”  She hummed.

Going into the hotel, the attendants called the elevator.  She shifted her illusion to show her in different clothing and a new hairstyle while reverting to her actual appearance.  “Hey, Ron!”  Sora greeted.

Ron grinned back with a lifted eyebrow.  “It’s a little past midnight, little lady!  It’s a school night!”

Sora scoffed.  “I have been missing a few days lately, but you don’t have to worry.  I’m going to start homeschooling soon; I think I’m entitled to a small break!”

Ron slowly nodded with closed eyes.  “Hard to argue with logic like that.  You’ve been working really hard these past few years and are ahead.  Oh, by the way!  I met Vivian, why didn’t you tell me about her?  She’s a lovely woman … in my opinion, a little too lovely; she should watch where she goes around this time of night,” he muttered.

Woman, eh, I guess it was what I was going for, and it worked perfectly.

Sora sighed while shaking her head.  “I know; I just found out about her a few days ago.  Yesterday was the first time I met…”

She cut off as the doors slid open.  They were still on the first floor; Ron hadn’t pressed the button to her penthouse, and this elevator was specific for the upper penthouse residents.

A man and woman came stumbling in, clearly not of penthouse class; the woman almost fell on top of Sora, and she instantly noticed the strong scent of alcohol on both of them.  The smell felt intoxicating, her mind going blank.

She snapped out of her stupor at Ron’s voice.  “Whoa there!”

The man grabbed Ron to steady himself, sputtering, “Foor sevpol ulnetooooon.”

Ron chuckled with a slight edge of exasperation as he directed a stare at Sora, whispering, “He occasionally gets into the wrong elevator.”

The man mumbled something even more unintelligible than his last statement.

“No, Mr. Yalix, your penthouse is forty-three,” Ron grumbled, clicking the fourth-floor button; they rose.  “Sorry about this, Sora, but I think we’ll have to cut our conversation for a moment.”

Sora laughed lightly.  “Yeah, no, I get it,” Sora said, trying to sink into the back corner to escape the strong scent of alcohol that was numbing her mind.

The elevator stopped; Ron watched with raised eyebrows as the man and woman took one step and toppled over each other.  “On second thought—Sora, can you wait a moment while I help Mr. Yalix and his … guest to his penthouse?”

Sora took a moment to recognize Ron’s words before nodding with understanding.  She watched Ron take out the elevator key and, with a grunt, took Mr. Yalix under the arm and began guiding him to his room.  Her sharp ears followed his random mumblings all the way to his penthouse around the corner.  Ron returned a few minutes later and helped the woman to the same room.

Finished, he returned and inserted the key again.  “Sorry about that, Sora.  It doesn’t happen often, but there are times when people come back without their minds—were you in different clothes?  I thought Vivian wore…”

Sora nodded silently before realizing her illusion had shattered.  “I don’t think I changed,” she said, feeling woozy.  Ron frowned but didn’t pursue the topic as they rose.

Stepping into her hotel, she waved Ron goodbye, watching the doors slide shut.

She stood still for several minutes as her mind returned to the alcohol.  Their smell wasn’t bad … but it wasn’t good … it just felt like a time-lapse.

Shaking her head, she felt her ponytail whip around her face and lightly slapped both her cheeks.  “Snap out of it, Sora!  I wasn’t drunk; they were!”

Walking to her room, she shook her head again, sitting down on her bed with her laptop.  Switching the Spotify station to Awolnation, she tried to get the sensation out of her mind.

Opening her web browser, she brought the back of her hand up to her lips.  Jin is ninety-nine years old, young, hates Inari and those that follow her.  She can speak any language and is intelligent.  That’s all I know about her.  How can I use that information to narrow down the list?

Bunching her lips, she typed can speak any language into the search box.  Scanning down the list, she hummed with interest as she clicked on a wiki link labeled Omnilingualism.

Reading down the information, her lips bunched to the side.  It’s interesting but doesn’t really tell me anything about possible creatures with the ability.  Well—unless Jin’s Santa Claus … I don’t know how else to figure out what she is.  What about things that hate Inari?

Searching it, she browsed down the links and sighed.  Nothing really, just things Kitsune may hate.

Scratching her ear, she decided to move away from Jin and look up more information on Eyia.  Thinking for a moment, she typed in Asgardian.  She wasn’t too shocked to see a wiki link for a fictional race and skipped it to the Wiki link for the Norse religion, quickly reading down the information.

So, these Æsir people lived in Asgard, and when the Vanir broke down the walls, they all made a truce by hostages?  This is getting super complicated; giants, norns, vættir, elves, dwarves, gods, and goddesses from two separate godly factions.  Frost Giants?  Eyia does put off a super cold atmosphere; could she be a Frost Giant?  I’m not seeing anything to do with a Fenris Wolf and Frost Giants.

Returning to the search engine, she typed Asgard and Fenris Wolf.  Skipping by the movies, she clicked the Wiki link for Fenrir and began reading down the information.

Well, no wonder Eyia doesn’t like Fenrir; he basically marks the end of Asgard … it still doesn’t get me any closer to her identity.  She could be a goddess or a giant … Still, Kari sounds a lot scarier.  Fenrir ate the moon!  And Kari’s like a descendant of Fenrir?

Breathing a sigh, she leaned back in her chair.  “Kari definitely was scary as a wolf.  Who knows anymore?  Maybe he did actually eat a moon in some mystical dimension.”

Deciding to amuse herself, she went to the superpower wiki page on Omnilingualism and typed in the search box Fenris, clicking the first suggested link.

Furrowing her brows, she scrolled down the many different links it offered until she found Hellhound Physiology and scrolled down to Fenrir, reading aloud.

“Monstrous wolf so large that his upper jaw touches the sky while his lower one touches the earth when he gapes … able to kill Odin.  Yeah, if you can kill the head of all the gods … I’d say you are dangerous.  This is supposed to be Kari’s grandpa or something?”

Continuing to the Fenrir Wolf’s abilities, she breathed through her teeth as she opened them in different tabs.  “Absolute Condition the upper scale, eh?  So, Fenrir is basically the apex of his species, top physical condition … basically super-strong, super-fast, and super durable.  Kari was all of those.”

She moved on to Elemental Breath.  “Hmm, she can breathe fire or ice?  She didn’t do that to me, but her throat was glowing … maybe she’s just young like me and doesn’t have that yet?  I mean, that’s nothing special, right?  I mean, I can make foxfire and generate red electricity!”

Her eyebrows lifted as she read the following ability.  “Kari has an eating disorder … to the point she’ll eat a sun … they left out the moon part.”

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Giggling to herself, she licked her lips at the next ability.  “Divine Slayer or Divine Ingestion by eating Odin and Domino Effect for starting Ragnarok or the death of most gods.  She can also just keep growing like crazy.”

Tapping her fingers against the mouse, Sora sank a little in her seat as she absently moved her tail to the music.

She’s just a super physically powerful wolf, not much magic besides the breath thing—a fast tank.  She might be all but invulnerable; she is super strong, she was getting a lot faster as we fought.  Lori said my magic wouldn’t work on her, but bending light worked, so it’s just against her personally, I assume.  Her senses seemed sharp, and supposedly the bigger Fenris Wolves get, the more powerful they become.  Sure, some impressive feats, but how much of this is true?

Stretching with a puff of air, she shut her laptop and started to get ready for bed, her stomach growled, but she ignored it.  She didn’t know why, but she was exhausted.  Not physically or even mentally; she just wanted to get some sleep.

Walking into her room, she found the rays of sunlight reflecting off the ocean to her window.  Dad will be home tomorrow … Maybe I’ll finally get some real answers.

Yawning, she jumped into bed and quickly fell asleep.

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