Chapter 02 - Pink’s strengths
Green suppressed a cry as she ran down the steps into the underground shaft.
To call it “suppress” was a joke in itself though, since she tried to yell but no sound came out of her mouth – even though it was widely open, drawn by fright.
Her common sense told her she did not have any reason to yell, because the thing she saw right in front of her couldn’t be true by any means.
Did she have some kind of realistic dream again, just like last time?
Or was this being, which stood in front of her and seemed to come out of a nightmare, to be real?
Whatever it was, whether real or not, it did have a thin, rather lean, black body which shot into the height and only just fitted in the shaft.
The eyes of the being were a shiningly orange and could be compared with the floodlights of a car when it came to size and form. However it did not have any mouth, but several thorns on his back that seemed to stare at the girl.
Green did not know what do to; but the second the eyes of the monster were turned towards her in a rash motion, she knew that she only wished for one thing: to run away!
Whether it was a dream or reality, she wanted to be anywhere but here!
Out of pure panic Green turned around without paying any attention to Pink. She managed to climb two steps before her flight already proved to be unsuccessful:
a piercing pain blazed up in her right shoulder wing and spread through her whole body and she felt her own warm blood on her skin.
She saw the way it had splashed onto the wall, dark spots already popping up in her vision – spreading more and more, the darkness threatening to swallow her.
Green lost her balance and tilted towards the end of the stairs. But before her head could meet the ground, her consciousness reached the surface again and she managed to grab the metal banisters just in time.
She had no time to rejoice from being saved from a fracture of the vertebra, because the monster’s weapon attacked once again; this time around, its hand-picked victim recognized the claws which had pierced through its chest earlier.
The monster deifinitely had far too long jaws for her liking.
Her instincts to survive and her knowledge in rhythmical gymnastics and sports drove Green to evade the next attack:
She consolidated her hold on the banisters with both hands and swung her dainty body over the metal bars as she had often made it in the lessons.
However, she had never done a somersault on some stairs in an underground shaft on slippery stairs – there wasn’t even sufficient place! - so Green banged to the wall made of concrete.
"Green!" She heard Pink’s voice from far away, and was surprised that her body, drawn by pain, was still able to react to the sounds.
"Your dodging-action was so cool! But I think when it comes to the landing you need some practice..." How could this damned girl be so lively at this moment? They were as good as dead! Whatever this thing was, it would tear her up in the air. Perhaps Pink would manage to flee, but Green couldn’t move any more and…she had a gaping hole in her body anyway.
....she would die. So or so.
"Open your eyes! And look at me!"
But she had never fallen in love before! She was still so young!
She did not want to die - not here, not because of such a dung creature!
"Green-chan! You and I, we aren’t human beings! We are Wächter! We have been born to fight demons!"
....Excuse me please?
"You can fight against the demon! Just take the little bell and fight!"
Take the little bell? How the hell should this help?!
"Green-chan! Fight! You are not weak like human people! You are not weak!"
What? Weak? Green and weak? She scoffed at the thought. She had never been weak.
She always stood on her own two feet; she was independent and could not be influenced by other’s opinions and attitudes.
Green always did what she thought to be the right thing to do - no matter what others said.
But with such a big injury it was simply not possible; this had nothing to do with weakness –
Mankind was simply not capable of making miracles.
"Green-chan, you must fight - as a Wächter! Come on!"
....but maybe Wächter were.
Green's senses resumed her work completely when she felt a liquid splashing into her face. She slowly opened her eyes, and tasted the flavour of blood in her mouth at the same moment. At first, her view field was sprinkled with black spots; however, it got better slowly.
Pink stood half a metre away from her. A pink wall, which apparently came out of Pink’s extended palms, separated the creature and the girls. Obviously the demon was far too close for Green's taste. Her eyes had hardly adjusted to the surroundings when the pink substance crumbled like splinters of glass. Just then Green noticed that little Pink’s shoulder had gotten quite the hit, and realized a second later that it was her blood Green got in the face not too long ago.
Pink had just saved her life – even though they didn’t even know each other...?
“Green-chan...use…the little bell”, the little girl said before she fell to the ground, motionless like a stone. Green bit on her lower lip and stared at the body, from which the blood flowed and spread out on the grey ground.
Only when she remarked that the monster had turned its gigantic eyes towards her now, she averted her eyes from Pink.
What was she supposed do to? ‘Use the little bell’? Yes, but how?
The desperate girl had no choice but to trust Pink. Or to put it in a different way:
If she was supposed to die, she could as well try everything possible to escape this destiny.
Out of pure panic Green tore the seal of the cheap silver necklace apart and held the bell the same way Pink did before: She kept the little bell extended in her hands in front of herself, facing the demon.
This damn thing had to help her; Green did not want to die.
When these thoughts entered her mind she felt that the little bell’s form actually started to change.
The little bell was no longer a piece of jewellery, but a staff decorated with a little bell inside of a circle, which was fastened to the top of the stick.
Green did not know how or why, but suddenly she was conscious of the fact that the staff would be useful as a weapon. Her panic from before was suddenly blown away; it was as if she’d know exactly what she had to do. Even when the attack of the demon shot towards her, she remained quiet. She pointed the staff out to the black energy the demon fired and was not even astonished when the black energy was absorbed by the top of the staff.
One part of her new weapon turned black, and she lifted up the staff to pull it down just as quickly while some kind of device got filled up. When the staff was exactly at the level of the demon, Green called:
The same energy Green had caught only briefly before unloaded itself from the lace of the weapon; only with the difference that the centre was a shining white now.
The energy had hardly met the target, when the monster dissolved faster into single particles than Green could blink with her eyes.
Nothing was left of this nightmare. Still clasping the weapon with her hand Green stared to the place her opponent had been at just a few moments before.
Slowly the pain crept up once again, and she felt faint when the pain caught up to her, inviting her into the realm of unconsciousness. She fell down to the ground,
side to side with Pink...
Steps resounded from far away. Gentle steps, as if one would hardly touch the floor. Green wanted to open her eyes, she wanted to see that person with her own eyes, but the attempt was rendered impossible.
Every single fragment of her body hurt terribly, and she was surprised she was still conscious. Why wasn’t she dead yet?
"My dear girl…you put up a good fight…” Green recognized the voice: it was the same faithful and at the same time familiar voice she had already heard in her dream - and which had advised her against the little bell.
Who was she? The woman had to sit or kneel at her side by now, because Green noticed the way she stroked her brown hair out of her face.
And there was something else she felt: Her pain eased, as if it would dissolve into thin air.
No, that wasn’t correct. It didn’t dissolve into "air" - but left warmth...and security.
The warm hand which had touched her face came loose again and Green felt the impulse to cry out for her, to ask her not to go yet. But she left...the steps faded away in the shaft and when Green was able to open her eyes,
she only managed to catch one quick look at the back of the person. Her appearance was purest white; her long hair was of white colour and the wide dress she wore as well, only with some blue tints in it.
"In Light's name! White! What did you think?" Yet again, it was her father’s time to be in a flaming temper – no, he was boiling over. And he surely had enough reasons for doing so.
It was a good thing White wasn’t present at the moment. Other Wächter had to suffer from his temperament instead, and all of them looked quite similar to him in appearance – all three of them were thoroughly white.
"Yogosu has quite an interesting fighting style! Very great!"
"You call that ‘fighting style’? I would call it...", a different one answered, but he was interrupted:
"Unimportant! We have to consider that her attack had only 10% magic you’d assign to the light element!”, the sourest person out of these three said.
He instantly took control of the discussion. "She should be the representative of the light, but from what I’ve seen our worst fears just got confirmed!”
"I would like to kill her!", the tallest of them replied with a smirk while his hand rested on a sword. The white-haired male who stood next to him twisted his eyes with irritation, and the last one of the group answered:
"You have already failed 16 years ago, Seigi." Said man did not come to answer, because the other one answered - carrying a calm intonation:
"We should keep in mind that half of the council is still on White-san’s side. Such a step would be fatal for the balance in our rows." White's father sighed annoyed.
"Did you speak with Adir?"
"He still refuses to take part in the council." This was too much. A clenched fist smacked onto the table. His interlocutor winced, while swordsman Seigi was still smirking.
"After seeing these numbers...", he pointed at a screen.
"And he still refuses? Yogosu could become an enormous danger. If we do not extinguish this danger as fast as possible, I am pessimistic for the future of the Wächtertum, my fellow Hikari!
Something has to be done. As fast as possible!" He looked at the two men in a serious manner, with eyes hinting a purpose.
"Convoke the members of the council! We shall call them together – with or without Adir! And take care of my daughter – she has to be present!"
It was a clear morning; no rain clouds could be seen over Tokyo, and it would turn into a pleasant day for those who loved the sunshine. The better part of mankind was already on their way through the dawning streets, cramped and sticky.
Only a couple of them still slept. Green was one of them, still lying placidly in her bed, asleep...till a clattering noise startled her and she instantly sat up in her bed as straight as a candle.
"What the hell..." Green still looked around a little sleepily and rubbed the sleep out of her eyes. Only then she noticed the advanced time of the day, telling Green she should hurry if she wanted to make it in time for school.
Opening her wardrobe without any motivation, she dragged her school uniform of the bar and got changed. With the brush in her hand she left the bedroom. She hardly entered the living room, which adjoined to the kitchen, when she knew what had produced the waking noise from before; Pink stood amongst fragments. Full of beans she beamed a "Good morning, Green-chan!" at Green, as if she would not notice the shattered shards she stood in.
"Morning. What did you do? You know just how expensive something like that is, right?", Green answered roughly. Pink’s innocent air did not work with her conversation partner, but she tried it nonetheless.
"I only wanted to cook something…but I am not used to doing it this way!" Green sighed thereupon and was on the verge of pulling out her pocket calculator to calculate the financial damage, but suppressed that impulse.
"I will buy a new plate later on and you will repay the money! Every single yen!”
Pink looked at her confusedly.
"But I don’t have any money anyway."
Green shook her head in a tired manner and decided that first of all it was too early and taking to Pink wouldn’t accomplish anything so or so.
"Ah, forget it, I am in a hurry. We’ll clarify this later!"
She was barely outside in the stairwell when yesterevening’s events slowly made their way into her consciousness. This monstrous being, the whole blood, Pink lying on the ground, the pain she had felt, that woman...and what she herself had done. Had this been only a dream? Was there a different way to explain how she simply woke up in bed after these events, just like she did any other morning? The day started out as always…and her school uniform, which she had worn during the fight, should have been torn - but it looked as if it would be new, without a single scratch or hole in it.
Green stared at her hands where likewise no single scratch could be seen. This was simply too impossible to be true...but there was a way to confirm her memories: the little bell.
Said one hung on a silver chain again; it was not broken like it had to be, if these events were to be true - and this certainly calmed Green to a considerable degree.
She refused to believe the weird and unusual happenings, surely it had been nothing but a very realistic dream caused by something she had seen on television.
But Green quickly noticed she was mistaken, because the little bell had changed its form again - and in Green’s hands lay the weapon which had killed the demon yesterday's night.
"…you and I, we aren’t human beings! We are Wächter!"
Green only swallowed.
In the course of the day Green withdrew herself more and more into her own world of thoughts. It was almost impossible for others to reach her, and only after the second or third attempt it was possible for Sho to get her attention. Of course she noticed the condition her best friend was in, but Green did not respond to her questions. How could she? How was she supposed to tell someone about it? Nobody would believe her in the first place, and she did not want to believe it herself either. Again and again the events happened in her mind’s eyes and Pink’s words recurred as if they were put on endless loop.
To deceive herself Green voluntarily practised rhythmical gymnastics in the empty gymnasium, even when her scheduled training lesson was long done. Her thoughts should circulate around her movements or the mathematic exam she just got back today - but the training only managed to focus her inner thought circles even more on these strange events. Green wondered if her recently gained lightness was also the little bell’s fault, and if it was also to blame for these wings she had always wanted…
What was the little bell anyway? What had the light been about which had shone and encompassed her when she touched the little object?
There were too many questions and nobody who could give her an answer. Green doubted that Pink could give her the explanation she yearned for...
But that angelic woman could most likely give her the answers - how was Green supposed to find her though?
Green was so absorbed in her thoughts that she didn’t notice her gymnastics ribbon setting a snare - and instantly she fell to the ground. She lay motionlessly; not because the fall had hurt enormously, but because she lacked the desire to get up. Her fastened breath was the only thing which could be heard in the gymnasium; it was completely quiet aside from that. Green simply lay there in the sunlight, which shone through the big open window under the roof.
Somehow it did good…she had never noticed the sunlight could feel so great. It was almost embellishing warmth...just like the warmth of the woman. But not only this; the light seemed to recharge her resources.
Green suddenly felt so well that she didn’t feel the slightest need to get up ever again. Therefore she waited some minutes before she straightened up again.
She did not stand up though, but crouched down on the ground, her head lifted up into the radiant sun’s direction, when she slowly opened her eyes and saw directly into the sun.
Only after a few seconds passed in which she had seen directly into the middle of the sun, it dawned upon Green and her eyes widened with surprise.
"Tell me, are you able to look straight into the sun?!"
She could look into the sun. But a normal human being had to wear sunglasses in order to look into the sun without being dazzled. How could Gary have known? Why had he asked her in the first place?
Or could this be coincidence? But nobody asked such a question. No man would come onto such an idea! What did this mean?
Maybe he was not as inconspicuous as she thought him to be? Still, too many questions...and still nobody available who could provide answers.
On the way home her thoughts had fixed themselves around Gary now, the other questions had slid themselves into the background.
She had even gone as far as to look for him in the school building - or rather in the library. Green was determined to start a talk and receive answers from him, but he was nowhere to be found.
On one hand this was pretty annoying, but on the other hand she did not even know how she was supposed to start that conversation.
Should she simply approach him and ask him what his question had meant? She didn’t know him well enough to judge whether it would work…she had never had a good look at him or even made the effort to understand him.
Green did not even know where he lived; otherwise she would have been able to visit him at least. If he wasn’t a human being either, he could definitely give her more answers than Pink -
because Green thought that even if Pink knew something, it wouldn’t be useful. Pink was not really the brightest or the most profoud person; she was already sure of that after these three days.
Therefore Gary was a good person to start her research with - she had to ask for his help to have the tiniest possibility of an information-source, even if the thought didn’t please her;
after all their relationship wasn’t grounded by any sympathy. Especially after yesterday's hostility from his side! No, Green really did not like him.
But to get her curiosity quenched she would even do this.
Green's trains of thought were interrupted half way and the origin was anything but wonderful, because it was the shining glow of the little bell. Most likely this meant the same event as yesterday: a demon was nearby.
Swallowing, Green looked around, almost imploringly. The people around her did not notice the shining light and Pink was nowhere to be seen, just like the apparently nearby demon.
What was she supposed to do now? Go home and fetch Pink first, or try to contact her? Would it already be too late then, would there be causalities by then? But…did it concern her at all?
If Green should be honest to herself, she had to admit that she would love to ignore the shining light of that little bell.
The demon didn’t really matter to her, and Green had never been a helpful or social person from the start, she was rather the opposite of it, an egoist.
Why should she put her life at stake for others? Would anybody do it for her? No, nobody was interested in her either; that was the way the world was, cruel and hard.
The glow got stronger just like the cry of the little bell, and at the same moment it intermixed with yet another cry. Green rolled around and saw the cause; no fifty metres away the shrilling bell’s origin had appeared and piled itself up over a woman now. The monster looked different from the last one, its figure was definitely stronger but also a bit smaller - if you could call three metres of height small.
The fact that it had a mouth also distinguished it, and apparently it could even be used for speaking. Because when he saw Green there was a hissing:
"Where is the little brat?" This was too much for the woman; she fainted and so Green and the demon were alone in the little street. She briefly wondered if there was a chance to simply push off - but then the creature would probably eat the woman, or something else - and Green wasn’t sure whether she could take the responsibility. Therefore she had no choice but to declare war onto the demon, as much as she disliked it.
Quickly Green undid the little bell of her chain, and when the little thing barely met her hand it changed into her weapon.
Judging from last time, Green had to wait for an attack she could absorb and this seemed to be her one possible chance of a victory.
“Where is the little brat?!” the demon frequently said and Green wondered whether the sentence was the only one it could say. Who was it after?
The demon did not seem to have any intention to concern itself with Green; it motionlessly stopped in his tracks fifty metres away from her, looking around eagerly.
Therefore, the new female Wächter had nothing else left but to approach him, if he was too lazy to move. She inwardly cursed when she set for the sprint, but her tactics actually had some use.
She had hardly moved when it attacked, just the way she hoped for. Exactly like she did in her last fight Green kept the staff extended in front of her and absorbed the black energy - magic or whatever it was - and again, half of it turned black.
But just when Green wanted to attack the demon bet her to it. With an enormous speed the claws shot into the girl’s direction, and she could only drop herself on the ground to dodge his action. She had no time to rest, because it immediately pursued her and its fist buzzed down on her as if it would want to squash an ant. Green did not manage to evade it, getting up would have taken too long. She squinted her eyes and prepared for the worst kind of pain...but it was in vain.
"Green-chan!" Green had never been so relieved to hear Pink’s squeaking voice and finally dared to open her blue eyes.
She saw the same phenomenon above her which had already saved her life once: a pink coloured plate that looked similar to glass.
Green used the time the demon stared at the newly arrived Wächter well, and fled out of his attacking circle in Pink’s direction. Only then she noticed that the demon stared at Pink for an exceptionally long time.
"The little brat!" At first Green only thought that it was a miracle it could also voice something else, but then its content dawned upon her - and she swirled around to Pink.
The look of her little friend had suddenly gotten tremendously frightened - and if Green wasn’t misguided she started to shake.
"Pink, what’s the matter?" These words had hardly left her lips when Pink already hid behind her back.
“They’re coming for me!”
It was hardly to be overlooked that the demon had zeroed in on Pink. Because when it suddenly raced towards them and the two girls had to jump away from each other out of pure necessity, it directed its attention completely towards Pink. Green wasn’t interesting anymore. It reached for Pink, who reinstated her strengths to set up a barrier between her attacker and herself, escaping a hit that way. Pink was small and agile and that was her advantage over the big block. Her abilities protected her from direct hits, but she did not take the swing for a counterattack - why?
"Pink! Just attack it! You have enough chances!" Pink dodged another attack of her pursuer and thus had no time to reply. Only after several manoeuvres she answered:
"I can’t! I can only cast protection magic!“ In her mind Green chastised herself a fool; she could have stumbled across that idea earlier.
“Hey, you stupid dung creature! Assault someone who’s almost as large as you are!" Green’s attempt to attain the attention of the demon was in vain; it had only eyes for Pink. But one could also make use of it.
Green ran past it and noticed some stairs she sprinted upwards, in order to be approximately on the same level as the demon’s head.
She took a run-up, jumped off the topmost step and while she was still in the air she swung the staff high over her head and shouted:
"Darklightning!" When the black energy unloaded itself, Green's staff did not hit its head the way she had planned but the shoulder instead -
even though she had missed her target, the result was still the same though:
the demon was eliminated.
... and Green landed roughly on the ground. While she was moaning - noticing that this hadn’t been the most beautiful free skating still –
Pink ran towards her and before Green could act the little girl flung her arms around Green’s neck and lovingly embraced her.
"Thank you, Green-chan! I love you so much!" Said one didn’t really know how to respond to such a declaration.
Thus she kept silent for a moment, till Pink let go of her again and sat down grinning in front of her. Green, however, got serious:
"Pink, I think you owe me an explanation."
And Pink’s smile faded.