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 World Reader 
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Joined: Tue Jun 12, 2007 11:52 pm
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Post Re: World Reader
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"Dunno if I slept since Monday.
You look tired too."


Ellen: "Yeah. Early start, late end. The underlevels of the Pillar are pretty spooky.

I took a peek in your room when you were passed out, looked like you kept yourself busy too."

7420-06-05 Wednesday
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Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:50 am
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"Ah. Yeah. Test nerves did that."


Thu Mar 26, 2020 10:46 pm
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"Ah. Yeah. Test nerves did that."


Ellen: "Mm. Did you get a letter yet?"
7420-06-05 Wednesday
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Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:12 am
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"Yeah. Just a bit ago."
> Tired grin.
"I kicked its ass."


Fri Mar 27, 2020 1:18 am
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Post Re: World Reader
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"Yeah. Just a bit ago."
> Tired grin.
"I kicked its ass."


Ellen: "Heh, guess you were worried for nothing. Is there a celebratory dinner for mid-year entry exams?"
7420-06-05 Wednesday
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Fri Mar 27, 2020 2:01 am
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"On Saturday. Friends and family invited."


Fri Mar 27, 2020 3:49 am
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Post Re: World Reader
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"On Saturday. Friends and family invited."


Ellen: "Mm, you're going right?

I'll carve out some time to go with you too!"

7420-06-05 Wednesday
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Fri Mar 27, 2020 3:52 am
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"Excellent.
It'd be nice if Ralph could be here too. We can just have a second celebration when he comes back."


Fri Mar 27, 2020 5:23 am
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Post Re: World Reader
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"Excellent.
It'd be nice if Ralph could be here too. We can just have a second celebration when he comes back."


Ellen: "Maybe you could have the second one back in Darson? That way you can get a party with people who you can't bring to Vellum."
7420-06-05 Wednesday
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Fri Mar 27, 2020 5:37 am
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"That's a nice idea. I like that."


Sat Mar 28, 2020 4:21 am
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"That's a nice idea. I like that."


Ellen: "Hopefully you can get some proper rest now. I'm off to bed, don't stay up too late."

~ "Yeah, I'll get some sleep after I'm done eating."

After she heads upstairs, you finish your meal and wash up, getting to bed yourself.



~



An alarm blares over the facility intercom, followed shortly by the voice of the project director.

"Base One is attempting to escape. All faculty staff follow lockdown protocol. Security to cover exits until the sweep team arrives."

You quickly pace down the hallway, Miina following behind.

Miina: "The security room is the second one on the left."

~

You pull the charred corpses off of the control panel and look at the wall of screens, hitting the button to switch through different camera feeds.

Miina: "It looks like the majority of the guards are covering the main entrances.

Only two guards at each maintenance entrance, but those doors take a minute to open - guards will rush in once you try to open them."


~ "So we need some way to distract them."

~

In the control room of the Containment Wing, you can see all of the cell doors through the shielded window.

Flipping all of the door control switches, every door opens, the now-free children looking confused.

Pressing the button for the intercom, you let your voice reach the children.

~ "I'm helping you all escape. There are guards covering the main entrances - there aren't many, you can power through them if you all work together. Go now, quickly."

A few of the children quickly get moving, motivating the others to follow them in a small army.

You turn and leave, heading towards one of the maintenance entrances.




~



You wander around the Vellum shopping district, weary from last night's lack of sleep.

Finding another tea shop, you open the door and walk in.

The shop has a pleasant aroma from the boxes of dried minced leaves and spices that line the shelves. A chirop is behind the counter, greeting you with a polite nod.

Shopkeep: "Welcome."

~ "Do you have any Malacia tea?"

Shopkeep: "We do not, sorry. We have a shipment arriving in a month, but it's all reserved by other customers. If you'd like, I can add you to the reservation list and you'll have the next available box."

~ "No thanks, but thanks."


Leaving the shop, you sigh.

The sixth shop you've checked and it's also out. No restaurants have it either, even the one you went to with Ellen.

Well, maybe tomorrow will have better luck.



~



You feel someone nudge your shoulder and you open your eyes.

You're sitting at a long dining table with a white cloth overtop, one of the many tables lined with new academy students and their family.

Ellen is sitting beside you, a worried smile on her face.

Ellen: "Food's here."

Carts full of dishes stacked high with food are pushed out of the kitchen and the servers begin distributing the food throughout the tables.


Ellen: "Still stressed out?"
7420-06-08 Saturday
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Sun Mar 29, 2020 1:55 am
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"Ah... yeah.
Yeah. A lot of nightmares."


Sun Mar 29, 2020 2:12 am
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Post Re: World Reader
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"Ah... yeah.
Yeah. A lot of nightmares."


Ellen: "What about?"

~ "Just, various things. I think I just need a few more days to relax and I'll be okay."

Ellen: "Mm..."

She doesn't seem convinced, but doesn't press it.

The two of you begin filling your plates with the various selection of dishes displayed out on the table. Obviously, you go for all the bug dishes.


Ellen: "I heard there was going to be a special guest appearance, didn't catch who though."
7420-06-08 Saturday
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Sun Mar 29, 2020 4:51 am
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"I'd say Kamilla, but that'd be too obvious."


Sun Mar 29, 2020 4:53 am
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Post Re: World Reader
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TorrentHKU wrote:
"I'd say Kamilla, but that'd be too obvious."


Ellen: "Maybe it is!

Though, I don't think there's any precedent of that."


She looks around the room at everyone - eight tables in total, and only about a quarter look like students, the rest are their family or friends.



Ellen: "How many people took the exam?"

~ "Way more than the people here, even if everyone was a student. Pretty low pass rate."


She puffs up, looking into the distance with a bright smile.


Ellen: "Both of us came from across the ocean, running from troubling circumstances, and somehow we've made it all the way here.

What we've done to get here, the blood and sweat we shed. I always feel so proud to have climbed this high, and I'm still going.

You can feel it too, right?"



The blood that you shed...



You dip your head, the air feeling heavy, a knot forming in your throat.


Tears begin to roll down your face, blurring your vision.

Standing up from your seat, you turn and quickly walk away.


Ellen: "Isabelle..."







You cry. A choking gasp that you can't suppress no matter how hard you try, and streams of tears that continue to flow.

Leaving the building, you blindly walk away, stumbling through grassy hills until you reach the shade of a tree, collapsing against it, sobbing, the weight of your mistakes bearing down.


Through your distorted vision, you see someone sitting beside you, and they pull you into a tight hug, and you can't help but soak their shoulder with your tears.





You calm down, after several minutes, though now occasionally hiccuping.

Opening your eyes, you see pitch black hair rolling down the side of the woman.


Who..?


Looking up, yellow eyes look back down at you, a pale face softly smiling.

You want to run away, but she's still holding you tight.


You look away, resting your head on her shoulder.


~ "I don't deserve to be here."

Kamilla: "Why is that?"


~ "My skills, my magic, it's all, stolen. People are dead because of me. So many..."


She gently runs her fingers through your hair, undoing the occasional knots.


Kamilla: "Was it by your own will?"

~ "Yes."


You feel her rest her head on top of yours.


Kamilla: "We are more similar than I thought.


So many people I have killed with my own weapons, my own hands. Most of them, innocent. My strength, the refinement of my skills and weapons, built on a mountain of corpses.

Not a day goes by without me thinking about it, the monster I was.


People like us, we can't undo our mistakes.

All we can do is outweigh the sins of our past with blessings of the present.
"



~ "How do you keep going, when the nightmares don't go away."


She helps you into a sitting position, wiping your cheeks with a cloth before lifting your face so your gaze is on her face, where you're met with a warm beaming smile that warms your soul, divine golden eyes locked onto yours.


Kamilla: "Use your strength to pull others along. For every soul you've taken, give the kindness that they would have given. Make everyone around you smile, and they will make you smile back."



~



You walk back towards the academy dining hall, where Ellen is waiting outside, worried.

Taking a deep breath, you feel, calm, and almost happy.

~ "I'm okay."
7420-06-08 Saturday
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Sun Mar 29, 2020 6:45 am
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